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Paternity leave and fathers' involvement with their young children

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Abstract

Unlike many European countries, the US has no national paternity leave policy giving fathers the right to take paid time off work following the birth (or adoption) of a child. Despite this, prior research suggests that many fathers do take some time off work after a child is born. However, little is known about the determinants, circumstances or consequences of paternal leave-taking. In this paper, we use the first wave of data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Birth Cohort (ECLS-B), a new nationally representative panel study of over 10,000 children born in 2001, to examine these questions. We make use of ECLS-B questions asked directly of resident fathers pertaining to their participation in a range of child care-taking activities, as well as a rich set of measures about the father, mother and child. We find that the overwhelming majority of fathers take at least some leave at the birth of their child, but that the length of that leave varies a good deal. Our results also indicate that fathers who take longer leave are more involved in child care-taking activities nine months later.

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... As explained in the opening chapters of this volume by Yogman and Eppel and by Kotelchuck, there is now overwhelming evidence showing that engaged fatherhood has meaningful implications for the health and welfare of families, including for mothers', fathers', and children's physical, mental, and relational wellbeing. From a child development perspective, fatherhood engagement is associated with a breadth of important outcomes-ranging from decreased infant mortality to heightened parental attachment, reductions in child abuse and behavior problems, and increased cognitive test scores (see also, Guterman et al. 2009;Huerta et al. 2013;Nandi et al. 2018;Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel 2007;Paxson and Waldfogel 1999;. ...
... Importantly, evidence suggests that there are more than temporary benefits from policies that boost fathers' participation in early parenting (Patnaik 2019). Crossnational evidence indicates that men's participation in parental leave-particularly longer and more independent participation-contributes in lasting ways to fathers' involvement in caregiving and other forms of household labor (Bünning 2015;Huerta et al. 2014;Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel 2007;O'Brien and Wall 2017;Patnaik 2019;Pragg and Knoester 2017;Rehel 2014). In sum, social policy research strongly suggests that individual, non-transferable resources explicitly designated for fathers is a way to "promote" gender equity in parenting, particularly when simply "enabling" fatherhood engagement is not effective (Brighouse and Wright 2008). ...
... In the absence of state-sponsored parental benefits-as is the case in much of the United States (Engeman et al. 2019), a minority of workers have access to paid family leave from their employers (Kaiser Family Foundation 2020; U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics 2019). Within the United States, the privileged few fathers who do have access to paid paternity leave through their employers tend to hold more prestigious and higher paid occupations (e.g., professionals, executives) (Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel 2007; or benefit from union representation (Budd and Brey 2003). ...
Chapter
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The purpose of this concluding chapter is to offer scholars, policy makers, and organizational leaders a preliminary framework for diagnosing barriers to engaged fatherhood and for generating policies, programs, and behavioral interventions to promote gender equity in parenting. We start by reviewing the case for engaged fatherhood to support the health and welfare of men and their families and to regain momentum in the stalled revolution toward gender equality. Building from the cross-disciplinary and cross-national collaboration that led to the construction of this edited volume, we propose three working principles for reducing the barriers to engaged fatherhood: (1) create individual, non-transferable parenting resources explicitly for fathers, (2) reduce economic conflicts between breadwinning and caregiving, and (3) build supportive social networks for engaged fatherhood. We explain how these principles apply to social policy, as well as to work and healthcare practices—the three fields of scholarship and practice represented at our original Fatherhood Experts Meeting. We conclude with suggestions for further cross-disciplinary, cross-cultural collaboration to enhance engaged fatherhood.
... Most notably, several studies have tested the impact of fathers' leave on their involvement in unpaid labour and (to a less extent) parity progression. 16 Extensive quantitative studies have documented some form of a positive relationship between fathers' uptake of (long) parental leave and a more gender-egalitarian division of unpaid labour in a range of Western countries (Almqvist & Duvander, 2014;Evertsson et al., 2018;Fernández-Cornejo et al, 2016;Haas & Hwang, 2008;Hosking et al, 2010;Huerta et al, 2012;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007;Pailhé, 16 The relevant literature on the relationship between fathers' uptake of leave and the gendered division of unpaid labour (Chapter VII) and the relationship between fathers' uptake of leave and fertility intentions (Chapter VIII) will be covered in more detail in subsequent chapters. Hence, I discuss them briefly here to minimise repetition. ...
... Empirical studies have documented the association between fathers' uptake of leave and fathers' involvement in unpaid labour in a wide range of Western contexts. A group of studies report a positive link between fathers taking some amount of leave and greater involvement in childcare in Sweden(Almqvist & Duvander, 2014;Evertsson, Boye & Erman, 2018;Haas & Hwang, 2008), Iceland(Arnalds et al., 2013), the UK(Tanaka & Waldfogel, 2007), the US(Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007;Petts & Knoester, 2018;Pragg & Knoester, 2017), Spain(Fernández-Cornejo et al., 2016), Australia only in the weekends(Hosking et al., 2010), France ...
Thesis
While interest in fathers’ uptake of leave is increasing internationally, the extant literature on fathers’ leave primarily documents Western, especially Nordic contexts. Against such a backdrop, my thesis investigates the determinants and aftermaths of fathers’ uptake of leave in South Korea using a mixture of qualitative and quantitative data and methods. I focus on to what extent fathers’ leave contributes to equalising the gendered division of unpaid labour, elevating childbearing intentions, and reconciliation of childcare and employment. The first paper gives a general comparison of leave-takers and non-takers based on a national survey. I find fathers’ employment in the private sector or large private sector companies to be the most salient sociodemographic determinant of their uptake of leave, followed by mothers’ bargaining power. I further find that dual-earner fathers who take leave contribute significantly more to housework and childcare than their counterparts. Moreover, the mothers of leave-taking fathers report lower intentions for a second child and significantly greater work-family conflict. The second paper assesses whether fathers’ uptake of parental leave contributes to a more equitable division of unpaid labour based on original survey data. I find that it is mostly the selection of fathers already involved in housework and developmental childcare which explains most of the difference between fathers who have taken leave and those who have not. There is only limited evidence to suggest that very long leaves of one year or longer could potentially make fathers more involved in the case of routine childcare. The third paper inquires whether fathers’ leave is pro-natalist by exploring the processes and mechanisms by which fathers’ uptake of parental leave impacts intentions for additional children. Both my quantitative and qualitative analysis confirms that fathers’ parental leave has an anti- rather than pro-natalist effect. Findings demonstrate that in countries with poor support for the reconciliation of employment and childcare, equalising the gendered division of parental leave alone may not be sufficient to see a reversal in its fertility trends. The fourth paper studies how norms about childcare and working hours shape fathers’ decisions to take (long) leave as well as their work-family balance after leave. My analysis of interview and blog data finds that fathers are often pushed to take (long) leave as a last resort in an absence of more desirable alternatives to care for a young child. These conditions continue to constrain parents after the end of the fathers’ leave and limit the otherwise more radical impact that fathers’ uptake of leave could have on work-family balance and gender equality. Overall, I argue that in a context characterised by high levels of work-family conflict and where a minority of fathers take leave, fathers’ leave plays a rather limited role in contributing to a more gender-egalitarian work-family balance, at least for the time being. My thesis extends the empirical literature on fathers’ leave to an East Asian country based on the utilisation of original and multi- data and mixed methods and demonstrates the importance of accounting for context in designing, implementing, and researching leave policy.
... Previous research has suggested, however, that fathers' leave-taking can contribute to their long-term involvement in childcare and consequently break the gendered patterns of parenting. Several studies from countries with differing leave policies suggest that fathers' take-up of parental leave is associated with their taking more responsibility at home, spending more time and being more emotionally involved in childcare, being more engaged with the child, and working fewer hours overtime in paid employment (see Almqvist & Duvander 2014;Brandth & Gíslason 2011;Bünning 2015;Duvander & Jans 2009;Haas & Hwang 2008;Huerta et al. 2014;Lidbeck & Bernhardsson 2021;Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel 2007;Romero-Balsas 2015;Schober 2014;Tanaka and Waldfogel 2007). Couples who took shared parental leave more equally also reported increased understanding of each other's everyday life (Almqvist et al. 2011;Duvander et al. 2017). ...
... Another limitation of our study was that although the results confirm the association between fathers' leave take-up and the parental division of childcare responsibilities found in many earlier studies (e.g., Duvander & Jans 2009;Haas & Hwang 2008;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel 2007;Tanaka & Waldfogel 2007), they do not allow conclusions to be drawn on causality. It is possible that fathers who are willing to share care responsibilities later on are self-selected users of parental leave simply because they are more ready than other fathers to take (more) leave. ...
Article
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Objective: This article reports on the associations of fathers' leave take-up with parents' care responsibilities when their child is around four years old. Background: In families with small children women continue to do more parental care work than men. Several studies, however, have suggested that fathers who take up parental leave also take more responsibility for childcare. Method: We applied logistic regression analysis to Finnish survey data collected in 2019 from the mothers and fathers of four-year-old children to find out whether father’s take-up and length of leave is related to fathers taking equal or more responsibility for different dimensions of parental responsibilities, including hands-on care, interacting with the child, community responsibility and mental labour. Results: Our descriptive analysis showed that in families with two working parents, parents shared some hands-on care tasks more equally if the father had taken more than three weeks of leave. When only the father was in paid employment, his take-up of leave was associated with taking the child to or from daycare. Conclusion: We conclude that while father's individual leave has unfulfilled potential in dismantling gendered parental care responsibilities, its effects might differ across different dimensions of parental responsibilities.
... Paid family leave (PFL) policies provide essential time away from work for new parents to care for a newly born, adopted, or fostered child. Past research identifies numerous health benefits associated with PFL, including increased initiation and duration of breastfeeding (Berger et al., 2005;Chatterji & Frick, 2005;Chuang et al., 2010;Fein & Roe, 1998;Guendelman et al., 2009;Hawkins et al., 2007;Johnston & Esposito, 2007;Lindberg, 1996;Ogbuanu et al., 2011;Staehelin et al., 2007;Visness & Kennedy, 1997), reduced depressive symptoms among mothers (Chatterji et al., 2011;Chatterji & Markowitz, 2008;Dagher et al., 2011), and increased bonding and participation in childcare activities for fathers (del Carmen Huerta et al., 2013;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007). Availability of PFL is further associated with greater economic stability particularly for low-income and single mothers, and employers potentially stand to benefit from PFL through increased labor force attachment, improved employee morale, and increased productivity. ...
... Additional child health benefits include fewer low-birthweight and small-for-gestational-age births; decreased infant hospitalizations; decreased infant mortality rates; reduced likelihood of obesity, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, hearing problems, and ear infections (Lichtman-Sadot & Bell, 2017; Pihl & Basso, 2019; Rossin, 2011;Stearns, 2015;Tanaka, 2005). Benefits of PFL extend to new parents, including reduced depressive symptoms and risk of severe depression in mothers (Chatterji et al., 2011;Chatterji & Markowitz, 2008;Dagher et al., 2011), and increased bonding and participation in childcare activities for fathers (del Carmen Huerta et al., 2013;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007). ...
Article
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Introduction Paid family leave (PFL) has the potential to reduce persistent health disparities. This study aims to characterize differences in access to paid leave by industry sector and occupational class. Methods The Bay Area Parental Leave Survey of Mothers included respondents 18 years of age or older who worked in the San Francisco Bay Area and gave birth from 2016 to 2017. Using linear probability models, we examined differences in five separate measures of PFL by industry sector and occupational class. We extended our regression analysis to simulate the full pay equivalent (FPE) weeks of leave that would have been taken under hypothetical scenarios of increased uptake and wage replacement rates. Results Our study included 806 women in private for-profit or non-profit jobs. In fully adjusted models, blue-collar workers were 10.9% less likely to take 12 weeks of paid parental leave versus white-collar workers (95% CI: -25.9, 4.1). Respondents were 19.2% less likely receive 100% of their regular pay if they worked in education and health services (−29.1, −9.3) and 17.0% less likely if they worked in leisure and hospitality (−29.5, −4.4) versus respondents in professional and financial services. Respondents in leisure and hospitality reported 1.6 fewer FPE weeks of leave versus respondents in professional and financial services (−2.73, −0.42) and blue-collar respondents reported an average of 1.5 fewer FPE weeks versus white-collar workers (−2.66, −0.42). In our simulation analysis, when we manipulated rates of uptake for paid leave, the disparities in FPE by industry sector and occupational class were eliminated. Conclusion We observed substantial inequities in access to paid leave by industry sector and occupational class. These findings underscore the potential importance of universal PFL programs with universal benefits to reduce clear inequities that persist within the labor market today.
... Leave takers had higher education, higher incomes, worked full-time and were married (Huerta et al, 2013.). Research is consistent in saying that more educated fathers are more prone to leave-taking (Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel, 2007;Geisler andKreyenfeld, 2011, Wall andLeitão, 2017). Another critical determinant in the decision-making process are fathers' personal preferences. ...
... Research is conclusive in saying that fathers' use of leave contributes to fathers' later involvement in childcare (Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel, 2007;Tanaka and Waldfogel, 2007, Haas and Hwang, 2008, Brandth and Kvande, 2009McKay and Doucet, 2010;Huerta et al., 2013;Almqvist and Duvander, 2014). However, fathers should use leave for a certain period for a lasting effect. ...
Article
Parental leave reforms that aimed at higher father’s involvement in childcare began in the 1970s. However, the number of fathers who took parental leave increased only in the 1990s when Scandinavian countries began introducing father’s quotas or paternity leaves, that is, earmarked leave periods to be used by fathers or otherwise lost. Croatia introduced the two-month father’s quota as late as in 2013. Although the reform did not contribute to a sudden increase in the number of fathers on parental leave, there is always a steady, albeit small, number of fathers taking up leave. This article aims to provide an insight into fathers’ experiences on parental leave in Croatia. Relying on interviews with 11 middle-class fathers in the City of Zagreb, the article explores father’s motives for taking leave, their experience regarding the initial decision and the procedure of exercising their right to leave and their experience of being on leave. Results suggest that the fathers were very eager to use their right to leave and spend time with their children. They mostly used longer leaves (more than 3 months) and the experience of being home alone with the child made the fathers learn new skills in relation to childcare and housework, but also rethink their relation to work and family. Key words: parental leave policy, parental leave, father’s quotas, fathers’ experiences, Croatia
... Meil analyses data from different European countries and finds that taking leave, regardless of length, is related with a higher frequency of childcare but not greater involvement in housework, and that leave length is related with increased care time. Research done in North America also shows a positive relationship between leave length and men's involvement in care (Knoester et al., 2019;Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel, 2007;Patnaik, 2019). In some research conducted in Scandinavian countries (Haas & Hwang, 2008;Kotsadam & Finseraas, 2011;Rege & Solli, 2010), parental leave use is related not only with greater time spent on childcare, but with greater equality in some housework as well. ...
... As can be observed in the first model, the coefficient for this variable is statistically significant and positive, such that, the longer the leave, the greater the father's involvement index, controlling for the effects of other important variables. These results confirm our first hypothesis and are consistent with the findings of other studies performed in Spain (Fernández-Cornejo et al., 2016;Meil, 2017;Romero-Balsas, 2015) and in other countries (Haas & Hwang, 2008;Hosking et al., 2010;Knoester et al., 2019;Meil, 2013;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007;Patnaik, 2019). Disaggregation of the analysis by age (models 2-4) shows that these effects not only occur when the children are very young, but also become part of these fathers' conception of their parental role and last over time as the children grow up, although some of the tasks are eventually performed by the children themselves as they grow (bathing, going to bed and dressing). ...
Article
Paternity leave has been introduced in many countries as a way to foster father´s co-responsibility in family obligations. This study aims \to analyse, for the Spanish case, if (1) the positive effects of the paternity leave are not only limited to the short term, but are maintained at medium and long term; (2) if a similar effect applies in the case of unemployment periods. Based on a subsample of 3388 cases derived from the Spanish Fertility Survey 2018, we perform OLS regression analysis of father´s involvement in childcare and housework. Our analysis shows that longer leaves are related to a greater involvement in care and housework activities, although only in the former, the effect is maintained in the long term. Regarding unemployed fathers, these individuals show more involvement in childcare during the first year, but the effect vanishes later and there is no significant relationship with housework.
... Studies examining fathers' outcomes find increases in fathers' leave uptake, especially when leaves are reserved exclusively for fathers (i.e. so-called "daddy quota" policies) (Bunning 2015;Duvander and Johnasson 2015), and find that fathers who take leave are more involved in childcare (Bunning 2015;Haas and Hwang 2008;Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel 2007;Petts and Knoester 2018;Schober 2014;Tanaka and Waldfogel 2007) and housework (Kotsadam and Finseraas 2011). Despite mounting evidence, the overall picture remains incomplete because existing research has not simultaneously analyzed how paid leave policies shape both paid and unpaid work for mothers and fathers. ...
... She finds that the policy increased mothers' child investments, but did not change fathers' overall child investments. Other studies have examined associations between parental leave take-up and involvement in childcare activities, finding that fathers who take leaves are more likely to be involved in childcare (Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel 2007;Petts and Knoester 2018). ...
Article
The birth of a new child continues to exacerbate gender specialization among different-sex couples. This study considers the potential of paid leave policies to intervene in this key life-course juncture and promote more gender egalitarian divisions of paid and unpaid work. While previous research has examined the impact of paid leave policies on paid or unpaid work among mothers or fathers separately, this is the first study to examine comprehensively how these benefits shape both mothers and fathers and both paid and unpaid work outcomes. I use data from the Current Population Survey 1990-2020 and the American Time Use Survey 2003-2019 and quasi-experimental differences-in-differences models to examine the impact of the introduction of paid leave policies in California and New Jersey on paid and unpaid work outcomes among different-sex couples. I find that change was modest and uneven. California and New Jersey paid leave policies declined mothers’ and fathers paid work after new births, increased mothers’ care work but not fathers’, and increased fathers’ housework but not mothers’. On the whole, paid leave policies appear to have helped support mothers’ primary caregiver role while simultaneously encouraging a more gender egalitarian division of housework.
... Even short leaves have been associated with positive father-child outcomes and an increase in long-term paternal involvement (Marshall, 2008;Meil, 2013). Researchers have found that leave taking fathers subsequently spend more time with their children and also more time on housework, with longer leaves only minimally increasing time spent with children (Meil 2013;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007), which suggests that those fathers who start off being more involved may tend to stay more involved. Interestingly, fathers who took longer leaves (e.g., six to nine months) often had partners who did not meet eligibility criteria for parental leave (Marshall, 2008;McKay & Doucet, 2010). ...
Thesis
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In Canada, new parents have access to maternity and parental leave following the birth or adoption of a child. Parental leave, which follows maternity leave, entitles new parents to thirty-five weeks. Although both parents have access to parental leave only a small percentage of fathers utilize the leave, despite the benefits for both fathers and their children. This gendered usage perpetuates the belief that family responsibilities are mothers' responsibilities. This dissertation utilized a multi-level study to explore the organizational, manager, and employee characteristics that influence support for and use of parental leave by male employees. Seven large, Manitoba employers were recruited for participation and the sample included 550 male employees and 354 female and male managers. Data were collected using a structured interview at the organizational level and two self-administered questionnaires for managers and male employees. The hypotheses were tested using OLS regression and hierarchical logistic regression. Results indicated strong support for parental leave use by men, though female managers were significantly more supportive than male managers. The strongest influence on support for parental leave use for both employees and managers was the personal use of parental leave. Male employees who perceived organizational family support and the view that men could take leave without negative career impact reported higher levels of perceived supervisory family support. Twenty-five percent of the sample had used parental leave, but those who had access to an Employment Insurance top up from their employer reported the highest leave use and the longest leave duration. Parental leave was extended from ten to thirty-five weeks in 2000, the results indicate that fathers who had access to a ten-week leave were eighty percent less likely to report leave use, compared to those with access to 35 weeks of leave. Therefore, to increase parental leave use organizations are encouraged to increase awareness and explicit support for parental leave, as well as offering a top up. Future parental leave policy development should focus on both increasing wage replacement and the addition of a non-transferable leave for fathers, similar to that offered in Quebec to increase fathers' leave use. iii ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
... Much of the literature on paternity leave has focused on how paternal leave helps to increase father's involvement in childcare along with mothers, resulting in the greater gender division of labor in the family (Jesmin & Seward, 2011;Castro-García & Pazos-Moran, 2016;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007;Rege & Solli, 2013;Cools et al., 2015;Escot et al., 2014). The provision of paternity leave provides the father with a sense of fulfillment, which helps maintain a healthy relationship with his partners and has a long-lasting impact on family life (Mahmud & Chakrabarty, 2018). ...
... Longitudinal individual level studies that explore the effects of leave take-up can provide helpful information on underlying mechanisms. A large number of correlational studies from various countries, including Bangladesh, Iceland, Sweden, Germany, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States (Estes et al., 2007;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007;Tanaka & Waldfogel, 2007;Haas & Hwang, 2008;Jesmin & Seward, 2011;Fernández-Cornejo et al., 2018;Pragg, 2021), found that fathers who take leave or longer leave tend to be more involved in childcare even later on during their children's early years (for an exception, see for Australia Hosking et al., 2010). Fathers who take (longer) leave are likely to differ from other fathers in several aspects, such as in their identities as fathers and workers, which are difficult to capture using quantitative measures. ...
Chapter
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Statutory parenting leave policies in high-income countries have been subject to numerous reforms, with a general trend towards increasing leave provision for fathers. Simultaneously, promoting gender equality by increasing maternal employment and fathers’ involvement in childcare has become a more important policy goal of parenting leave policies (Gornick & Meyers, 2003). In this chapter, we contribute to the literature by collating, summarizing, and discussing existing empirical findings on the relationship between statutory parenting leave policies – i.e., maternity, paternity, and general parental leave – and parental labour market outcomes, the gender division of family work, and gender norms. To this end, we conduct a literature review of studies published in international journals during the period 1990–2020. We substantively complement a recent review on family policy and female employment by Ferragina (2020) in several ways by focusing solely on parenting leave as one area of family policy and covering a broader range of parental practices and gender norms. Specifically, we focus on the labour market participation and careers of mothers and fathers and their involvement in family work. As many scholars have emphasized the legitimizing and norm-setting role of such family policies (e.g., Schober, 2014; Gangl & Ziefle, 2015), we also summarize the small number of studies investigating effects on beliefs and norms regarding the gender division of labour. We take an interdisciplinary approach and consider cross-country comparative as well as national case studies. We critically review the analytical extent to which previous studies suggested plausible causal chains of mechanisms for how parenting leave policies relate to our outcomes of interest
... Over the last decade, there has been growing interest in paternity leave in Spain, both at a political, institutional and academic level and in terms of public opinion. That mainly stems from the benefits that the extension of this leave has had on the involvement of fathers, gender equality and child wellbeing (Brandth & Kvande, 2018;Duvander, 2014;Huerta et al., 2013Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007Pragg & Knoester, 2017). Despite the fact that in recent decades the gap between social expectations and current involvement by fathers has decreased due to the introduction of friendly parental leave policies, there are still significant divergences in parental involvement by country (Crespi & Ruspini, 2016;Rush, 2015). ...
Article
The aim of this article is to present empirical evidence on the use of parental leave by fathers under the Mediterranean Welfare State, as a Spanish tribute to the legacy of Dr Rush in politics of fatherhood in a comparative perspective. We will focus on the Spanish case to analyze the use of paternity leave by fathers for the period 2001–2017. We consider the family unit – as a setting for bargaining and socialization – from a longitudinal perspective. The paper presents a very valuable and in-depth analysis of socio-demographic factors influencing the family decision to take parental leave by fathers (age, education, employment status, socio-economics). Based on the literature reviewed, we consider that these factors have a greater impact on how parental leave is used differently and how it has evolved over time. The case of Spain is interesting for the research because it represents a political and social model that combines a recent institutional commitment to the work/life balance through the extension of paternity leave for fathers with a male breadwinner family model still in transition.
... First, bonding with children during their first few weeks of life allows fathers the opportunity to step into the role of caregiver at an early age, paving the way for high levels of parental engagement and life satisfaction for the years to come. (Huerta et al., 2014;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007;Pragg & Knoester, 2017;Aumann et al., 2011;Harrington et al., 2011;Rehel, 2014). For example, Pragg and Knoester (2017) found that fathers' leave-taking behaviors were associated with fathers' higher engagement at one and five years after the births of their children. ...
Article
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Given the mounting social and governmental support for better paternity leave options in the United States, it is surprising that a recent national study found that “male respondents were far more likely [than female respondents] to indicate that they do not plan to take advantage of their workplace paid parental leave benefits,” (Deloitte, 2016). This finding may be explained by regulatory barriers that have risen due to the basic nature of the Family and Medical Leave Act and barriers rising from factors in the social environment, such as stigma and leader-member exchange (LMX). We built hypotheses from the social exchange perspective, emphasizing the role of communication as the primary facilitator of relational development. Data gathered from 92 fathers employed at a large midwestern university indicate that there is a statistically significant relationship between perceived paternity leave-related stigma and paternity leave intentions, and that fathers with high LMX perceived less stigma from their supervisors than those with low LMX. Implications and findings for future research are discussed.
... Men in the US, where there is no national paternity leave policy, have reported that they do not take leave, even if eligible, for fear it may hurt their careers. 133 Caregiving is antipathetic to the hypermasculinist norms associated with a successful career in law -the long-hours culture, 24/7 availability, 'rainmaking' (bringing new business to the firm) and the generation of significant income. 134 Whereas the idea of men as good providers for their families dovetails with the idea of profit maximisation that is valued highly by the firm, hands-on caregiving necessarily disrupts it. ...
Article
Although women comprise the majority of practitioners in legal practice in Australia, the question of who cares remains an enduring challenge for gender equality. Against the backdrop of social and policy changes resulting from the feminisation of labour, this article pays particular attention to the role of flexible work in legal practice. It draws on two empirical projects – one involving corporate law firms and the other involving NewLaw firms. As the results were somewhat ambivalent, the article then turns to the feasibility of shared parenting regimes by drawing on studies from Scandinavia. These studies show that the unencumbered worker ideal is nevertheless resistant to sustained absences from work even though the norms of fatherhood are changing. The competing narratives of the ‘new father’ and the unencumbered worker who devotes himself to work therefore produce a paradox that underscores the ongoing elusiveness of gender equality in legal practice.
... Il ne s'agit pas d'encourager les parents à adopter un arrangement de temps parental plutôt qu'un autre, si rupture il y a, mais de les préparer à faire ce choix en connaissance de cause. pour favoriser ce développement (Bünning, 2015 ;Nepomnyaschy et Waldfogel, 2007 ;Rege et Solli, 2013 ;Tanaka et Waldfogel, 2007). ...
... 64 Brancazio (2018, 438). 65 Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel (2007) 66 Perhaps this could explain how shared parental leave helps narrowing the gender pay gap (https://assets.publishing. service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/731288/Gender-Pay-Gap-actions.pdf) ...
Article
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The inequitable distribution of domestic and caring labour in different‐sex couples has been a longstanding feminist concern. Some have hoped that having both partners at home during the COVID‐19 pandemic would usher in a new era of equitable work and caring distributions. Contrary to these hopes, old patterns seem to have persisted. Moreover, studies suggest this inequitable distribution often goes unnoticed by the male partner. This raises two questions. Why do women continue to shoulder a disproportionate amount of housework and childcare despite economic and cultural gains? And why is there a widespread one‐sided misrepresentation within different‐sex couples about how domestic and caring work is distributed between the two partners? We answer these questions by appealing to affordance perception – the perception of possibilities for action in one's environment. We propose an important gender disparity in the perception of affordances for domestic tasks such as the dishwasher affording emptying, the floor affording sweeping and a mess affording tidying. We argue that this contributes not only to the inequitable distribution of domestic labour but to the frequent invisibility of that labour. We explore the consequences of this hypothesis for resistance and social change.
... Policies such as ear-marked well-paid paternity leaves, where fathers are encouraged to take leave without mothers, can help to change these views [88]. Making fathers the main carer of children in the early days of a child life can shift the ideas around whose role it is to care, not only in the first years of a child's life but also in the later years [89,90]. Similarly, campaigns to promote fathers' homeworking for care purposes, especially with role models from senior management, can help remove flexibility stigma and help both men and women to use homeworking to better engage in domestic work [23,91]. ...
Article
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This paper examines whether the expansion of working from home led to a more equal division of domestic work during the pandemic. We use unique data of dual-earner heterosexual couples gathered during the first lockdown in the UK when workers were required to work from home by law. Results reveal that mothers were likely to be carrying out a larger share of domestic work both before and during the lockdown. When fathers worked from home, compared to those going into work, a more equitable division was found for cleaning and routine childcare. Furthermore, homeworking fathers were up to 3.5 times more likely to report that they increased the time they spent on childcare during the lockdown compared to before. However, we also found evidence of homeworking mothers having increased their time spent on domestic work, and doing a larger share of routine childcare, compared to mothers going into work. Overall, the study shows that when working from home is normalised through law and practice, it may better enable men to engage more in domestic work, which can in turn better support women’s labour market participation. However, without significant changes to our work cultures and gender norms, homeworking still has the potential to enable or maintain a traditional division of labour, further exacerbating gender inequality patterns both at home and in the labour market.
... Nearly 90% of employed fathers take time off work after the birth of a child (Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007); yet, their time off is generally short. Among coresident fathers of children born in 2001-which was before states began enacting paid family leave policies-24% took less than 1 week of leave, 43% took 1 week, and 33% took more than 2 weeks (Huerta et al., 2014). ...
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There are multiple components of a public health approach for preventing child maltreatment. One of these components is the question of who to intervene with. Fathers are an under-targeted and under-studied group for child maltreatment prevention. In this conceptual article, we describe a public health approach for intervening with fathers. Acknowledging financial stress as a key risk factor for child maltreatment among fathers, we explore two policy interventions that aim to increase economic support for families during the early years of a child’s life: paid family leave and child care subsidies. During the weeks following the child’s birth, paid family leave can promote child-father bonding and enable fathers to engage in more caregiving during a critical family transition. After paid family leave ends, child care subsidies can make child care affordable for families with low income, thereby promoting parents’ employment and earnings. We conclude by highlighting ways in which fathers can take an active role in preventing child maltreatment.
... An expanding body of evidence suggests that paid family leave provides health benefits to families by protecting employment benefits and income and securing time for this important family and personal transition (Aitken et al., 2015;Andres et al., 2016;Hewitt et al., 2017;Nandi et al., 2018). Paid family leave has also been linked to improvements in infant, child, and maternal health (Chatterji & Markowitz, 2012;Hamad et al., 2018;Pac et al., 2019;Rossin, 2011); increased participation in childrearing by fathers (Bartel et al., 2018;Bünning, 2015;Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007); and increased labor force attachment among women (Baum & Ruhm, 2016). These benefits of paid parental leave have been examined primarily utilizing survey data which provide basic information on leave availability, but are not able to disentangle the various types of leave arrangements (e.g., parental leave, sick leave, vacation) that new parents must navigate. ...
Article
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Paid leave confers health benefits to new parents and their children, but the absence of a national paid family leave policy in the United States has left workers to navigate a patchwork of paid and unpaid parental leave benefits accessed through their employers. As public and private paid leave policies expand across the US, it is imperative to determine how these benefits impact leave taking behaviors among new parents. We use sequence and cluster analyses of administrative time-keeping records to detail parental leave-taking during the first 180 days after adding a child among employees of a large public-sector organization with a new paid parental leave policy. Results show that the additional paid leave benefits replaced some of the unpaid leave women were taking and also lengthened their total leave duration. For men, who were only taking paid leave, the additional benefits allowed them to save their sick leave but left total leave duration unaffected. This study highlights the complex ways paid leave policies impact leave-taking among new parents. As more state and municipal governments consider paid family leave policies, understanding the interplay between these policies and existing organizational structures is critical to maximize the benefits across the workplace and limit unintended consequences.
... Although there is much variation within cultural groups, these findings offer perspective on differential expectations regarding the role of fathers within the United States. (Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007). Unlike many other high-income countries, U.S. employers are not required to support or incentivize fathers to take time off for other childcare-related reasons (Raub et al., 2018 (Baker et al, 2003;Emerson, 2010). ...
Article
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Children with developmental delays (DD) pose unique caregiving challenges, given their developmental problems and risks for behavior problems (Baker, McIntyre, Blacher, Crnic, Edelbrock, & Low, 2003). Most of the studies involving caregivers of children with DD have highlighted the role of mothers, with very few studies focusing specifically on fathers. Studies on father involvement in home and school settings provide a theoretical rationale for increasing father involvement to support positive outcomes in children with DD. Synthesizing research on father involvement can further contribute to and shape legislation that ensures equitable access to education for young children with disabilities (i.e., the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act). This paper summarizes findings from a systematic literature review of father involvement across home and school settings in families of preschool-aged children with or at risk for DD.
... There is also scientific evidence that confirms the decline of the male breadwinner model as well as the fact that fathers who use long periods of leave are more involved in caring for their children (Fernández-Cornejo et al., 2016;Hosking et al., 2010;Lamb, 2010;Meil, 2013;Moreno-Mínguez, 2010;Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel, 2007). ...
Article
This article presents novel empirical evidence of fathers’ parental leave usage by introducing a family dimension in Spain. To test this hypothesis, a bivariate probit estimation was used to analyse the effect of the mother’s labour force participation on the father’s decision to take parental leave. This procedure allowed us to address the issue of simultaneous factors affecting the decisions of both the man and the woman, which were relevant to interpreting for the phenomenon. The results suggested that successfully using fathers’ paternity leave as a tool to promote gender equality depends on the family household’s characteristics and the woman’s connection to the job market. The bivariate probit estimation revealed that the effect of the woman’s decision on the man’s choice is much stronger than a naive regression would suggest.
... Only approximately half of all countries make any leave available to fathers, and the majority provide less than 3 weeks (Heymann et al., 2017). Gender disparities in paid parental leave may reinforce the idea that women are primarily responsible for caregiving and studies have shown that fathers who take paid leave are more involved in childcare, not only during that leave, but later in the child's life, which may in turn influence cultural and gender norms of proximity between each caregiver and the child (Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007;O'Brien, 2009). Public policies regarding paid parental leave can therefore either facilitate or hinder the availability of one or both parents to spend time at home with their children in early life. ...
Article
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Human infancy and early childhood is both a time of heightened brain plasticity and responsivity to the environment as well as a developmental period of dependency on caregivers for survival, nurturance, and stimulation. Across primate species and human evolutionary history, close contact between infants and caregivers is species-expected. As children develop, caregiver–child proximity patterns change as children become more autonomous. In addition to developmental changes, there is variation in caregiver–child proximity across cultures and families, with potential implications for child functioning. We propose that caregiver–child proximity is an important dimension for understanding early environments, given that interactions between children and their caregivers are a primary source of experience-dependent learning. We review approaches for operationalizing this construct (e.g., touch, physical distance) and highlight studies that illustrate how caregiver–child proximity can be measured. Drawing on the concepts proposed in dimensional models of adversity, we consider how caregiver–child proximity may contribute to our understanding of children’s early experiences. Finally, we discuss future directions in caregiver–child proximity research with the goal of understanding the link between early experiences and child adaptive and maladaptive functioning.
... To reap these benefits for men themselves and their proximal family environment, parental leave can represent an effective tool. Even more, men's parental leave-taking has been associated with their continuing engagement in childcare [17][18][19], changes in grandparents' attitudes towards gender equality [20], and in colleagues' willingness to take parental leave themselves [21]. ...
Article
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Men are currently underrepresented in traditionally female care-oriented (communal) engagement such as taking parental leave, whereas they are overrepresented in traditionally male (agentic) engagement such as breadwinning or leadership. We examined to what extent different prototypical representations of men affect men’s self-reported parental leave-taking intentions and more generally the future they can imagine for themselves with regard to work and care roles (i.e., their possible selves). We expected prototypes of men that combine the two basic stereotype dimensions of agency and communion to increase men’s communal intentions. In two experiments ( N 1 = 132, N 2 = 233), we presented male participants with contrived newspaper articles that described the ideal man of today with varying degrees of agency and communion (between-subjects design with four conditions; combined agentic and communal vs. agentic vs. communal vs. control condition). Results of Experiment 1 were in line with the main hypothesis that especially presenting a combination of agency and communion increases men’s expectations for communal engagement: As compared to a control condition, men expected more to engage in caretaking in the future, reported higher parental leave-taking intentions, and tended to expect taking longer parental leave. Experiment 2 only partially replicated these findings, namely for parental leave-taking intentions. Both experiments additionally provided initial evidence for a contrast effect in that an exclusive focus on agency also increased men’s self-reported parental leave-taking intentions compared to the control condition. Yet, exclusively emphasizing communion in prototypes of men did not affect men’s communal intentions, which were high to begin with. We further did not find evidence for preregistered mechanisms. We discuss conditions and explanations for the emergence of these mixed effects as well as implications for the communication of gendered norms and barriers to men’s communal engagement more broadly.
... We suggest changes in the gendered norms and policies at the societal level. For example, evidence has shown that increasing well-paid ear-marked paternity leaves increases men's involvement in childcare and housework not only during the leave but also many years after (Nepomnyaschy & Waldfogel, 2007). Such policies may help reduce gender division in childcare and domestic works, consequently shifting the gender norms and biases in society. ...
Article
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The present study explicates four types of multitasking when working from home according to their medium and social interactivity, and further explores the antecedent and consequences of different types of multitasking. A total of 429 U.S. employees who worked from home participated in an online survey in August 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic. Results indicated that a balance between work and life identities was positively associated with technology-mediated and in-person high-interactive multitasking during work time, but not with low-interactive multitasking. In-person high-interactive multitasking, in turn, was related to greater interference with work but a higher level of life satisfaction. In addition, men and women experienced different levels of work-life identity balance and adopted different types of multitasking to achieve such a balance.
... In this context, infant care is no longer purely a private family matter as employed parents attempt to accommodate 24/7 infant care within a 24/7 globalised working well-being, maternal and paternal health and well-being, fertility rates, and various labour market outcomes such as reduced gender pay gaps (Kamerman and Moss 2009;Andersen 2018;Moss et al. 2019). ...
Chapter
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There are various types of family leave available to fathers across and within countries. The specific design features of family leave policies are associated with how well used they are by fathers, and the key features associated with higher take up by fathers are presented here. There is an emerging literature on the various impacts of fathers on leave in relation to factors such as family health and well-being and gender equality in the labour market. In particular, fathers and family leave are important for a good quality of infant life. Finally, the chapter considers ways in which employers can support fathers in the workplace to take leave, in light of the range of associated benefits.
... Second, on a more positive note, for some fathers, employee-based paid paternal newborn leave provides a special opportunity for their psychological and practical growth as parents (i.e., paternal generativity). Fathers who take 2 or more weeks of leave are more involved in direct childcare at 9 months (Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel 2007), are more likely to remain in their marital relationship (Petts et al. 2019), and to enhance their partner's health and wealth (Persson and Ross-Slater 2019); though the direct benefits for fathers of paid paternal leave have been less well researched. Short or no paternal newborn leaves, in general, are associated with difficulties establishing a sense of paternal identity, paternal confidence, and competence in caregiving, and more work-family stress (Harrington et al. 2014). ...
Chapter
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Fatherhood has a direct and substantial impact on men’s physical, mental and social health, and sense of paternal generativity over their life course. This chapter, the second of a pair in this volume, explores the bidirectional impact of fatherhood on men’s health in the perinatal period. It pulls together a scattered fatherhood literature and articulates six broad pathways by which fatherhood could potentially impact on men’s health and development, both positively and negatively. This systematic exploration represents a new focus for the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) field, especially in addressing the perinatal time period, a time not usually thought of as impacting on men’s health. This chapter attempts to establish a firmer scientific knowledge base and rationale to support new, targeted perinatal fatherhood health programs, policies, and research. Hopefully, these will also further contribute to the growing efforts to expand men’s and women’s parental gender role expectations and equity, and enhance the parenting health and men’s health movements. Similar to the dual orientation of the women’s preconception health initiatives, earlier, healthier, and more actively engaged fatherhood should lead to both improved reproductive and infant health outcomes and men’s own improved health across the life course.
... A growing body of evidence demonstrates the importance of residential and non-residential fathers on families' welfare and economic wellbeing; on mothers' prenatal health and birth outcomes; on children's cognitive, psychosocial, and educational development and gender identity; and on adolescent behavioral risk reduction among other benefits (Alio et al. 2010;Cano et al. 2019;Yogman et al. 2016). Of particular significance to the development of fatherhood research has been the emergence of national and cross-national longitudinal studies on children and families that explore the contributions of fathers (e.g., Huerta et al. 2013;Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel 2007;Petts et al. 2020). These social scientific studies have blossomed alongside a proliferation of medical scientific studies on the importance engaged parenting (National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine et al. 2016;Yogman et al. 2016). ...
Chapter
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The aim of this chapter is to explain the motivations for launching an international, cross-disciplinary conversation on fatherhood engagement. This volume stemmed from a Meeting of Experts from three sectors: Health and Wellbeing, Social Policy, and Work and Organizations. This chapter illuminates the unique learning opportunity afforded by coming together to examine the differential and common struggles across these three fields to support engaged fatherhood. The chapter is divided in four parts covering (1) the urgency and importance of supporting fatherhood engagement, (2) the benefits of studying and supporting fatherhood engagement from a cross-sectoral perspective, (3) the main contribution of each chapter in this volume, and (4) our grateful acknowledgements of the many people who made this collaboration possible.
... Length of time off work is a categorical variable indicating whether fathers took no time off (reference group), one week, or two or more weeks off. These categories are informed by research on paternity leave in the United States, which suggests that two weeks off work is often key for promoting positive outcomes for American families (Nepomnyaschy and Waldfogel 2007;Petts and Knoester 2018). 5 ...
Article
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Relationship dissolution is common among socioeconomically disadvantaged parents. This study utilizes longitudinal data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study (FFCWS) to assess whether fathers’ time off work after the birth of a child reduces the likelihood of parents dissolving their relationship. We also consider whether the association between fathers’ time off work and relationship dissolution is mediated by fathers’ support of mothers and moderated by union type. Results indicate that the risk of relationship dissolution is lower when fathers take time off work after the birth of a child. Results also suggest that longer periods of time off work (i.e., two or more weeks) are associated with a lower risk of relationship dissolution among married couples, although overall evidence for variations by union type are mixed. Additionally, there is evidence that the association between fathers’ time off work and relationship dissolution is at least partially explained by higher levels of relationship support among fathers who took time off work after the birth of a child. Overall, findings suggest that providing fathers with opportunities to take time off for the birth of a child may help to promote relationship stability among socioeconomically disadvantaged couples in the United States.
Article
A number of studies have documented a positive (causal) relationship between fathers’ uptake of parental leave and a more equitable division of unpaid labour in Western contexts, primarily where men contribute to a fair share of unpaid work and fathers’ uptake of leave is common. South Korea offers an apt and contrasting setting to explore this relationship, with its highly gendered division of unpaid labour and low use of fathers’ leave, despite recent increases. This study finds that fathers who have taken (long) leave contribute more to housework as well as both developmental and routine childcare than fathers with neither leave plan nor experience. For housework and developmental childcare, this difference is mostly explained by already involved fathers self-selecting into leave. For routine childcare, there is limited evidence to suggest that very long leave of one year or longer could potentially make fathers more involved. In short, the gender equalising impact of fathers’ uptake of parental leave in Korea appears to be restricted mainly to long leave and routine childcare, if there exists any significant effect at all. Overall, this paper suggests that the gender equalising effect of fathers’ leave may vary depending on the stage of the gender revolution.
Article
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The aim of this article is to compare the legal development of the work-life balance directive in the European Union (EU) and Indonesia. The objective of the Work-Life Balance Directive is to enhance the existing EU legal framework for family-related leave and flexible work arrangements. The directive includes the introduction of paternity leave (the equivalent second parent/parent will be able to take at least 10 working days of maternity leave around the birth of the child, compensated at least at the rate of sick pay); the strengthening of the right to leave for birth for 4 months and the right to request flexible leave (e.g., part-time or gradually); and the establishment of nursing leave (5 days/year) for workers caring for permanency-impaired relatives. This policy can serve as a model for Indonesia in terms of defending worker rights and promoting a healthy work-life balance. Nonetheless, the Indonesian legal framework governing the work-life balance remains obscure. Therefore, the Indonesian legal system must modify existing regulations and/or pass new laws to ensure the quality of working time and life are balance which gradually could impact to the families economic stability.
Chapter
Well into the twenty-first century, achieving gender equality in the economy remains unfinished business. Worldwide, women’s employment, income, and leadership opportunities lag men’s. Building and using a one-of-a-kind database that covers 193 countries, this book systematically analyzes how far we’ve come and how far we have to go in adopting evidence-based solutions to close the gaps. Spanning topics including girls’ education, employment discrimination of all kinds, sexual harassment, and caregiving needs across the life course, the authors bring the findings to life through global maps, stories of laws’ impact in courts and beyond, and case studies of making change. A powerful call to action, Equality within Our Lifetimes reveals how gender equality is both feasible and urgently needed to address some of the greatest challenges of our generation.
Article
Background: Parental leave impacts family engagement, bonding, stress, and happiness. Because parental leave benefits are important to all surgeons regardless of sex, understanding parental leave practices in pediatric orthopaedic surgery is critical to promote equity within the profession and supporting balance in work and family life. The aim of this study was to survey pediatric orthopaedic surgeons about their knowledge of parental leave policies, attitudes towards parental leave, and their individual experiences taking leave. Methods: A 34-question anonymous survey was distributed to the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America membership. Eligible respondents were attending pediatric orthopaedic surgeons practicing in the United States or Canada. The survey gathered information about employer parental leave policies, perceptions about and experiences with parental leave while practicing as a surgeon, and demographic information about respondents. Results: A total of 77 responses were completed and used for analysis. Most respondents were men (59.7%), <50 years old (67.5%), married (90.9%), and in urban communities (75.3%). A large majority were practicing in the United States (97.4%). Most respondents were unfamiliar with employer parental leave policies (maternity: 53.3%; paternity: 67.5%; and adoption: 85.7%). Those familiar with policies reported that employers offered 7 to 12 weeks for maternity leave (45.7%) and <1 week for paternity leave (50%) and adoption leave (45.5%). Most respondents believed 7 to 12 weeks should be offered for maternity leave (66.2%), 1 to 6 weeks for paternity leave (54.6%), and 7 to 12 weeks for adoption leave (46.8%). Many respondents reported taking 1 to 6 weeks of parental leave as a surgeon (53.3%) and that their colleagues were supportive of their parental leave (40.3%). Conclusions: Most pediatric orthopaedic surgeons were unfamiliar with parental leave benefits provided by employers. Respondents who were familiar with these policies believed that more parental leave should be provided, especially for men who may feel social pressure to take less time for leave. Although respondents reported that their work environments were supportive, this study identified opportunities for improvement to support surgeons who wish to balance parental experiences with work responsibilities. Level of evidence: Level V.
Article
To write this article, Emily Draper and Jennifer Leigh from the International Women in Supramolecular Chemistry (WISC) network again joined forces with David Smith and asked dads working within the field of supramolecular chemistry to share experiences around parental leave.
Article
Policy Points Government policies that secure paid leave for all parents, regardless of gender, can reduce structural inequalities, while promoting fathers’ engagement in parenting. Such policies are likely to be most effective when they secure full, or almost full wage replacement, and when they provide incentives for fathers to take leave. Organizations must also participate in the culture shift, providing workplaces that encourage paternity leave rather than reinforcing the “male breadwinner” stigma. Government policies that secure paid leave for all parents, regardless of gender, can reduce structural inequalities, while promoting fathers’ engagement in parenting. Such policies are likely to be most effective when they secure full, or almost full wage replacement, and when they provide incentives for fathers to take leave. Organizations must also participate in the culture shift, providing workplaces that encourage paternity leave rather than reinforcing the “male breadwinner” stigma.
Article
Conduct the first empirical study to examine whether a father taking paternity leave is related to children's social–emotional development in Asia and the extent to which family dynamics mediate this relationship. The provision of paid paternity leave in Asia is relatively recent compared to many western societies. The impact of this policy on family dynamics and children's well‐being in Asia, where patriarchal ideology is more prevalent and women's labor force participation is high, is understudied. This study investigates this relationship in Singapore where government‐paid paternity leave was initiated in 2013. This study uses data from the Singapore Longitudinal Early Development Study which consists of 3895 children aged under 7. Multivariate regressions and propensity score matching analyses are conducted to assess the relationships between paternity leave‐taking, family dynamics, and children's behavioral outcomes. The KHB method is used to test the mediation effects of family dynamics. A 2‐week or longer paternity leave is significantly associated with lower family conflicts, mothers' parenting aggravation, higher marital satisfaction, fathers' involvement, and closer father–child relations. Paternity leave‐taking, mediated through positive family dynamics, is significantly associated with lower behavior problems in children. Relatively short paternity leave (2 weeks) can benefit both family dynamics and children's social–emotional outcomes. These results have implications for policies that aim to enhance work‐family life balance and gender equality in society.
Article
This article reviews the evidence on the impacts of paid family and medical leave (PFML) policies on workers’ health, family well-being, and employer outcomes. While an extensive body of research demonstrates the mostly beneficial effects of PFML taken by new parents on infant, child, and parental health, less is known about its impact on employees who need leave to care for older children, adult family members, or elderly relatives. The evidence on employers is similarly limited but indicates that PFML does not impose major burdens on them. Taken together, the evidence suggests that PFML policies are likely to have important short- and long-term benefits for population health, without generating large costs for employers. At the same time, further research is needed to understand the effects of different policy parameters (e.g., wage replacement rate and leave duration) and of other types of leave beyond parental leave. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Public Health, Volume 44 is April 2023. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.
Chapter
Fathers are integral to family processes and children’s well-being. However, major social and economic changes in the United States over the last several decades have had profound impacts on the economic and social well-being of men of lower socioeconomic status (SES) and men of color, specifically Black, Latino, and Indigenous men. These changes have created stark disparities in the ability and capacity of fathers to be involved with their children. Social policies can be effective mechanisms for promoting and ensuring the well-being of fathers, but fathers are rarely the explicit target of policy efforts. Child support enforcement, the only national policy targeting fathers, has produced an inequitable system that disproportionately subjects low-SES fathers and fathers of color to a series of punitive enforcement mechanisms with minimal benefit to children. We provide evidence for the potential of a broad swath of social policies that have not traditionally been targeted at fathers to improve the well-being of fathers and facilitate their engagement with children. We propose that social workers are uniquely positioned to advocate for reforms and expansions to these policies that will improve father, child, and family well-being and promote economic, social, and racial justice.
Article
The birth of a new child continues to exacerbate gender specialization among different-sex couples. This study considers the potential of paid leave policies to intervene in this key life-course juncture and promote greater gender equality in paid and unpaid work. While previous research has examined the impact of paid leave policies on paid or unpaid work among mothers or fathers separately, this study provides an integrated framework and examines comprehensively how these benefits shape both mothers' and fathers' paid and unpaid work outcomes. I use data from the Current Population Survey 1990–2020 and the American Time Use Survey 2003–2019 and quasi-experimental differences-in-differences models to examine the impact of the introduction of paid leave policies in California and New Jersey. The results show that the policy increased mothers’ and fathers’ short-term time off from paid work after new births, increased mothers’ care work more than fathers’, and increased fathers’ housework more than mothers’. I call this pattern differentiated egalitarianism, denoting changes increasing men’s involvement in housework while simultaneously reproducing mothers’ primary caregiver role.
Article
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to investigate how professional men in dual-career relationships craft and enact their fatherhood role ideologies during the transition to fatherhood. In particular, the authors focus on the impact that the development of a more involved approach to fatherhood has on the mother's ability to combine career and family. Design/methodology/approach This study utilizes a longitudinal, qualitative methodology. Pre- and post-natal interviews were conducted with 18 professional men in dual-career heterosexual relationships. Findings Although the traditional mode of fatherhood that is rooted in breadwinning continues to be the dominant approach among working fathers in the US, new modes of more involved fathering are emerging. The results of the study indicate that a general shift away from a strict, gendered division of household labor is taking place in today's dual career couples, and this is leading to an increase in men's involvement in childcare. Further, although much of the extant research conceptualizes fatherhood as a role typology, the results reveal that all fathers are involved in caring for their babies, though to varying degrees. Thus the authors propose a continuum of involvement. Finally, the authors discovered how men are finding creative ways to use official and unofficial workplace flexibility to be more involved at home. Originality/value The findings offer novel insights into the factors that encourage involved fathering. The authors encourage organizations to create more supportive environments that foster involved fathering by extending paid parental leave benefits to men and providing more access to flexibility.
Article
Work-family policies—such as parental leave and flextime—can help to facilitate gender equality in workplaces and in families. But policy use is typically low, varies significantly from one workplace to another, and is often more prevalent among women than men. Extant research suggests that flexibility stigma—workplace norms that penalize workers for utilizing policies that facilitate non-work demands—as well as the financial costs associated with policy use, contribute to this pattern. However, previous studies have been largely correlational in nature, and have had difficulty assessing how these factors may interact with one another to shape gendered patterns of policy use. In this study, we offer novel causal traction on this set of issues. Using an original, population-based survey experiment, we examine how the salience of flexibility stigma and financial costs affect men's and women's intentions to use work-family policies. We find that these factors exert a large direct effect on men's and women's intentions to use work-family policies. Moreover, the gender gap in parental leave use intentions is large in workplace contexts with high flexibility stigma and high financial costs, but this gap narrows significantly under more favorable conditions. Findings point to the importance of organizational contexts and policy design in shaping work-family policy use and, in turn, gender inequality.
Article
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Paid parental leave offerings in the United States are relatively rare and unequal. Yet, little is known about public opinions about paid leave and the factors that distinguish adults’ attitudes about them. With the use of data from the General Social Survey, we investigated attitudes about paid parental leave availability, preferred lengths of paid leave offerings, and government funding of leave in the United States. We found overwhelming support for paid parental leave availability, an average preference for four months of paid leave offerings, and common support for at least some government funding for leaves. Older and more politically conservative individuals were consistently less supportive of paid parental leave availability, longer lengths of leave, and government funding of leave. Women, supporters of dual earner expectations, black individuals, and those who were not working in paid labor were typically more supportive of generous paid parental leave offerings. These findings suggest that there have been longstanding desires for more widespread and generous paid parental leave offerings in the United States but that this has not yet been sufficient to prompt widely applicable policy changes across the nation.
Book
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This aim of this open access book is to launch an international, cross-disciplinary conversation on fatherhood engagement. By integrating perspective from three sectors—Health, Social Policy, and Work in Organizations—the book offers a novel perspective on the benefits of engaged fatherhood for men, for families, and for gender equality. The chapters are crafted to engaged broad audiences, including policy makers and organizational leaders, healthcare practitioners and fellow scholars, as well as families and their loved ones.
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The importance of father’s health and health behaviors during the perinatal period is an under-appreciated, but critical, topic for enhancing reproductive and infant health and development, and ultimately men’s own lifetime health. This chapter brings together the existing scattered reproductive fatherhood health literature and articulates a new conceptual framework that identifies eight direct and indirect pathways of potential paternal impact. Three pathways reflect pre-conception to conception influences; paternal planned and wanted pregnancies (family planning); paternal biologic and genetic contributions; and paternal epigenetic contributions. Three pathways reflect father-mother perinatal interactions: paternal reproductive health practices that may alter their partner’s health behaviors and self-care practices; paternal reproductive biologic and social health that may alter their partner’s reproductive health biology; and paternal support for maternal delivery and post-partum care. And two pathways reflect systemic influences: paternal mental health influences; and paternal contributions to the family’s social determinants of health. This chapter pushes back the time frame for the father’s developmental importance for his child into the antenatal period, if not earlier; it encourages more gender equitable parental roles and opportunities; and it provides a stronger scientific knowledge base to support new fatherhood programs, policies and research that encourages father’s more active, healthier and earlier reproductive health involvement.
Preprint
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Paid parental leave offerings in the U.S. are relatively rare and unequal. Yet, little is known about public opinions about paid leave and the factors that distinguish adults’ attitudes about them. With the use of data from the General Social Survey, we investigated attitudes about paid parental leave availability, preferred lengths of paid leave offerings, and government funding of leave in the U.S. We found overwhelming support for paid parental leave availability, an average preference for four months of paid leave offerings, and common support for at least some government funding for leaves. Older and more politically conservative individuals were consistently less supportive of paid parental leave availability, longer lengths of leave, and government funding of leave. Women, supporters of dual-earner expectations, black individuals, and those who were not working in paid labor were typically more supportive of generous paid parental leave offerings. These findings suggest that there have been longstanding desires for more widespread and generous paid parental leave offerings in the U.S. but that this has not yet been sufficient to prompt widely applicable policy changes across the nation.
Article
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This important 1999 volume examines the effects of the mother's employment on family life and children's well-being. It starts with a thorough review of previous research on this topic and then reports the results of a study designed to answer the key questions that emerge. The study focuses on 448 families, with an elementary school child, living in an industrialized city in the Midwest. They include both one-parent and two-parent families, African Americans and Whites, and a broad range of economic circumstances. Extensive data have been obtained from mothers, fathers, children, teachers, classroom peers, and school records. The analysis reported reveals how the mother's employment status affects the father's role, the mother's sense of well-being, and childrearing patterns and how these, in turn, affect the child. The book provides an intimate picture of urban life and how families cope with mothers' employment.
Article
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A multifactorial model was used to identify child, sociodemographic, paternal, and maternal characteristics associated with 2 aspects of fathers' parenting. Fathers were interviewed about their caregiving responsibilities at 6, 15, 24, and 36 months, and a subset was videotaped during father-child play at 6 and 36 months. Caregiving activities and sensitivity during play interactions were predicted by different factors. Fathers were more involved in caregiving when fathers worked fewer hours and mothers worked more hours, when fathers and mothers were younger, when fathers had more positive personalities, when mothers reported greater marital intimacy, and when children were boys. Fathers who had less traditional child-rearing beliefs, were older, and reported more marital intimacy were more sensitive during play. These findings are consistent with a multifactorial and multidimensional view of fathering.
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Fathers and mothers ( n = 120) of preschool-aged children completed 2 measures assessing fathers' behavioral involvement in child care (i.e., the amount of time that the father was the child's primary caregiver and the number of child-care tasks performed). The results reaffirm the findings from previous studies that father's long work hours can be a barrier to greater participation in child care but that mothers' extended work hours serve to increase father participation in child care. Women's perception of their husbands' competence as parents and marital satisfaction also explain fathers' involvement. Fathers' gender role ideology and attitudes about the fathers' role appear important for fathers' involvement in child care, and findings indicate that men's involvement may be more self-determined than previously believed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Article
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In this chapter we focus on theory and research regarding maternal and dual-earner employment and parenting, including an overview of historical and central issues; major theories, themes, and perspectives; early and contemporary research defining 3 distinct phases; practical implications of the research; and future directions. Consideration is given to parental involvement, parenting processes by which maternal and dual-earner employment impinge on children's development; longitudinal research; employed parents' attitudes toward parenting and employment; child developmental and cultural concerns; family adaptations; and changes in conceptions of adults' gender-based roles and responsibilities. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Fifteen per cent of British babies are now born to parents who are neither cohabiting nor married. Little is known about non-residential fatherhood that commences with the birth of a child. Here, we use the Millennium Cohort Study to examine a number of aspects of this form of fatherhood. Firstly, we consider the extent to which these fathers were involved with or acknowledged their child at the time of the birth. Secondly, we identify the characteristics that differentiate parents who continue to live apart from those who move in together. Thirdly, for the fathers who moved in with the mother and their child we enquire whether they differ in the extent of their engagement in family life compared with fathers who have been living with the mother since birth. Finally, for fathers who were living apart from their child when the child was 9 months old we assess the extent to which they were in contact, contributed to their maintenance and were involved in their child's life at this time.
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This research examined the parental leave-taking behaviors and attitudes of a sample of 550 U.S. men whose wives/partners were pregnant, in a longitudinal design that assessed them during the middle trimester of pregnancy, 1 month after the birth, and 4 months after the birth. Identity theory provided the theoretical framework. The fathers' mean length of leave was 5 days, with 71% of fathers taking 5 or fewer days; 91% of fathers took at least some leave. Generally both men and women were strong supporters of job-guaranteed parental leave for fathers, although opinions were mixed about paid parental leave for fathers. The employer's policy regarding length of leave was a significant predictor of the length of leave taken. As predicted by identity theory, sex role attitudes predicted length of leave; supervisor/co-worker attitudes were marginally significant predictors. As predicted by our analysis of the good-provider model and the father involvement model, fathers holding egalitarian sex role attitudes and high in family salience took the longest leaves.
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Using data from the first wave of the Millennium Cohort Study, covering a large birth cohort of children in the UK at age 8 to 12 months, this paper examines the effects of leave-taking and work hours on fathers' involvement in four specific types of activities: being the main caregiver; changing diapers; feeding the baby; and getting up during the night. We also investigate the effects of policies on fathers' leave-taking and work hours. We find that taking leave and working shorter hours are related to fathers being more involved with the baby, and that policies affect both these aspects of fathers' employment behaviour. Thus, we conclude that policies that provide parental leave or shorter work hours could increase fathers' involvement with their young children.
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Family leave coverage increased after the passage of the Family and Medical Leave Act in 1993, the increase was sharpest among workers covered by the Act, suggesting that the law had a positive impact on coverage.
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Seven years after the Family and Medical Leave Act, more employees are taking leave for family or medical reasons, and fewer report that they need leave, but are unable to take it; many employers offer leave over and above that required by the Act, and most report no adverse effects on their business
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This report is Volume 2 of the methodology report that provides information about the development, design, and conduct of the 9-month data collection of the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Birth Cohort (ECLS-B). This volume begins with a brief overview of the ECLS-B, but focuses on the sample design, calculation of response rates, development of various sets of weights, and nonresponse bias analyses.
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The purpose of this book is to provide a comprehensive analysis and integration of findings concerning the role of maternal employment in children's development based exclusively on longitudinal research. The book comprises the first compendium of longitudinal research specifically examining the role of maternal employment in children's development. . . . The studies in this volume examine constructs and processes involved in the relationship of mothers' employment to children's development. This book is organized into two main sections. The first main section presents the longitudinal studies (A. E. Gottfried et al.; Lerner & Galambos; Owen & Cox; Goldberg & Easterbrooks; Galambos et al., and Hock et al.) The second main section concerns the role of maternal employment in the larger context of business and society (Hughes & Galinsky; A. E. Gottfried & A. W. Gottfried). (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Predictors of paternal participation in child care and housework are examined. A longitudinal sample of 66 couples expecting their 1st child completed extensive questionnaires during the wives' last trimester of pregnancy and 3–8 mo after birth. Regressions were conducted in which paternal participation in child care and housework was regressed on variables pertaining to each of 4 models of paternal participation: relative economic resource, structural, family systems, and sex-role attitude. Composite models of paternal participation in housework and child care were then developed. Fathers' involvement in child care is best explained by mothers' work hours and fathers' feminism. Fathers' contribution to housework seems best explained by discrepancies in income between spouses, wives' occupational prestige, and dynamics in the marriage. Differences in the determinants of fathers' contributions to child care and housework are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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This study provides the most recent national estimates of the prevalence of employment during nonstandard hours (evenings, nights, or rotating hours) and on weekends. It also examines in a multivariate context the relevance of job and family characteristics as determinants of such employment, separately for men and for women. The findings support the contention that the demand for employment during nonstandard hours and weekends is pervasive throughout the occupational hierarchy, but particularly in service occupations and in personal service industries and for both men and women. Gender differences exist, however, in the relevance of family factors. Being married reduces women's but not men's likelihood of employment during nonstandard hours, and the presence of children affects women's but not men's hours and days of employment. (The direction of the effect for women depends on the children's age.) Implications of these findings are discussed.
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The pleasures and pressures of parenting a newborn are universal, but the supports surrounding parents vary widely from country to country. In many nations, decades of attention to benefits and services for new parents offer lessons worthy of attention in this country. This article describes policies regarding parental leave, child care, and early childhood benefits here and in 10 industrial nations in North America and Europe. The sharpest contrast separates the United States from the other countries, although differences among the others also are instructive: The right to parental leave is new to American workers; it covers one-half of the private-sector workforce and is relatively short and unpaid. By contrast, other nations offer universal, paid leaves of 10 months or more. Child care assistance in Europe is usually provided through publicly funded programs, whereas the United States relies more on subsidies and tax credits to reimburse parents for part of their child care expenses. Nations vary in the emphasis they place on parental leave versus child care supports for families with children under age three. Each approach creates incentives that influence parents' decisions about employment and child care. Several European nations, seeking flexible solutions for parents, are testing "early childhood benefits" that can be used to supplement income or pay for private child care. Based on this review, the author urges that the United States adopt universal, paid parental leave of at least 10 months; help parents cover more child care costs; and improve the quality of child care. She finds policy packages that support different parental choices promising, because the right mix of leave and care will vary from family to family, and child to child.
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We use data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation to examine the impact of leave entitlements on unpaid leave usage by men and women after the birth of a child from 1991 to 1999. The results indicate that legislation providing the right to unpaid leave has not affected men's leave usage. The results for women are mixed: in some specifications, leave entitlements are associated with increased leave taking or longer leaves, but the results depend on how we define leave coverage. Our results point to the limited impact of unpaid leave policies and the potential importance of paid-leave policies.
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