BEACON TRANSCRIPT – A new study held at Ohio State University’s Center for Human Resource Research shows that less women are choosing to take maternity leave and their places are taken by men, who are more likely to be paid for their time off.
The research found that about 70 percent of men taking paternity leave were paid in 2015, compared to less than 50 percent of women. Still, the number of men who are taking paternity leave is lower than that of women. However, the number of men has tripled since 1994, while the number of women stayed the same.
A U.S. Census Bureau community survey found that about 10 percent of men (that’s 22,000 men per month) took paternity leave. The figure for women lies around 273,000 per month, or 40 percent.
Dane Sapp, a senior interactive developer at AEP, recounted his situation. When his daughter Riley was born in August, he took two weeks off. One week was paid for by his employer, while the other one he took as paid vacation. As a comparison, his wife, Jessica, works at a local church and took a month off that she was not paid for.
The researchers are not sure why men are more likely to get paid, since it sounds a little peculiar. They suggested that it might be because men are not willing to get an unpaid leave. Since the economy has highly improved lately, they see no reason why they should not receive a paid leave.
An associate professor of human sciences at Ohio State, Claire Kamp Dush, declared that the situation might be a bit frustrating, but it is understandable. Women usually occupy working positions with less privileges, have lower wages, and are more likely to do part-time jobs. Although the rates of paid maternity leaves are increasing, they still occur less than three-tenths of one percent per year.
These low rates often cause women to use combinations of sick time and vacation time in order to get a few weeks off that they are also paid for. The researchers declared that this is too low of a rate for a nation like the U.S., with the largest annual gross domestic product in the world. They think that officials should revise their priorities and be more supportive of young families.
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