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MA Gets a C in Helping Parents in the Workplace

PHOTO: Massachusetts gets only a C in a report analyzing how each state in the union supports – or doesn’t support – new parents in terms of leave time and job protection. The study is timed for the White House Summit on Working Families. Photo credit: National Partnership for Women and Families.
PHOTO: Massachusetts gets only a C in a report analyzing how each state in the union supports – or doesn’t support – new parents in terms of leave time and job protection. The study is timed for the White House Summit on Working Families. Photo credit: National Partnership for Women and Families.
June 23, 2014

BOSTON – Massachusetts gets just a C in a report analyzing how each state supports – or doesn't support – new parents in terms of such things as leave time and job protection.

The analysis by the National Partnership for Women and Families shows the Commonwealth with some distance to go in terms of state policies, but also with some successes.

Vicki Shabo, one of the report's authors, says women in the private sector have greater access to maternity leave rights under Commonwealth law than under federal law.

"In Massachusetts, a new mom can take a leave after three months on the job, take the time to bond with her new child and then come back to work more energized, loyal, productive," she explains.

Also, now that same-sex marriage is legal, same-sex married couples in the Commonwealth have access to leave under federal laws.

The report, titled "Expecting Better: A State-by-State Analysis of Laws That Help New Parents," is being released to coincide with today's White House Summit on Working Families.

Shabo says some discouraging grades were handed out nationwide.

"The state with the highest grade is California, which received an A minus,” she relates. “But a striking 17 states receive an F.

“They do nothing at all beyond what federal law provides to help new and expecting parents. Thirty-one states in total get a grade of D or F."

Still, Shabo says she finds reason for optimism in the report.

"Since our last report, we've seen a number of states take action to support new and expecting parents,” she points out. “So there is progress on the horizon.”

The group's previous report was in 2012.



(and Talk Show Producers) Shabo can be reached at (919) 599-6726. Full report: www.NationalPartnership.org



Mark Scheerer, Public News Service - MA