Washington, DC - Many working families are victims of a corporate
culture and public policies that were forged in the middle of the last
century, when Dads went to work and Moms cared for the kids at home,
according to the National Association of Mothers' Centers.
"Bring us into the 21st Century!" is the message they gave this week to
a U.S. Senate work group looking into work/life reforms. The
Association's executive director, Linda Lisi-Juergens, says today's
employees can't juggle fast enough.
"There has been a change in the demographics of how families are
functioning, who is working, who is able to be home - and the policies
and the corporate culture don't support that."
Juergens' group wants paid sick days, although some small employers say
they can't afford to offer them. The group also endorses paid family
medical leave so workers can tend to new babies, illnesses or aging
parents. Washington is one of only a few states with a family leave law
on the books - but it's on hold until October of 2012 because of lack
In Washington, for instance, less than half of full-time workers and
only 12 percent of part-timers have paid sick days. Juergens says
adding some workplace flexibility should not be viewed as running
"counter" to the interests of business. Studies show that when
companies are more flexible, it enhances their employees' morale and
"One characteristic that makes them effective is their flexibility in
terms of what their workforce needs. Employers who are able to
implement this type of thing successfully are saying, 'I get much more
out of my workers; I have a much lower turnover.'"
The group's Washington, D.C.-based blog has current posts about related legislation at www.womaninwashington.org
. Washington law updates are available from the Economic Opportunity Institute