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CHESTNUT HILL, MA (June 9, 2014) – Fathers want to be present and involved from the first days of their children’s lives and increasingly expect their employers to support them through paid leave, flexibility, and ultimately a culture that respects their desire to be hands-on caregivers, according to a new study of 30 corporations and more than 1,000 fathers by the Boston College Center for Work & Family (BCCWF).
The New Dad: Take Your Leave, the latest assessment of the changing role of fathers by the Center, focuses on the much debated topic of paternity leave. While fathers are increasingly playing a significant role in caregiving for their children, society and organizations largely still retain the view of father as breadwinner.
Many organizations and governments are currently in the process of expanding their offerings for parental leave and specifically leave for new fathers. This report contributes data and insights to better understand the needs and desires of fathers and inform organizational policies and legislative initiatives. The study explores different perspectives on paternity leave, including a survey of more than 1,000 fathers from nearly 300 different organizations (primarily well-educated professionals); a benchmarking study of paternity leave policies at leading organizations; and a review of global paternity leave policies and practices, as well as U.S. states that have enacted laws to provide paid parental leave.
Recommendations are provided for fathers, organizations and legislators based on the information collected and analyzed by lead author Brad Harrington along with BCCWF colleagues Fred Van Deusen, Jennifer Sabatini Fraone, Samantha Eddy, and Linda Haas, global parental leave researcher from Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis.