Help NYC Teachers Fight for Paid Maternity Leave
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New York City Department of Education currently offers their teachers who have just become mothers NO PAID maternity leave. These are women who devote their lives to helping raise other people's children.
After getting pregnant in 2012, I went to a maternity workshop to help understand my maternity benefits. It began as a room full of bubbly, pregnant women, and ended with many of us in tears.
- Here is what we learned: In order to get paid for up to SIX WEEKS (you read that right-not months, weeks) we would have to use our own small number of saved sick days. If we had none, or few (which was the case for most of us, being around children all day long) we learned that we could borrow up to 20 days that we would eventually have to repay or rebuy.
Most women never make it out of their negative balance. If you have more than one child, forget it! You have likely borrowed all you can for the first. When I had my second daughter, even after two years of excellent attendance, I only was able to get paid for seven days after I gave birth.
This is completely common among teaching mothers.
For all our union fights for, I'm asking Michael Mulgrew, our Union President: When will the fight begin for our teaching mothers? As an education system, we are well aware of the importance a parent's presence has on his/her child. Yet why don't we value that? Why do women who spend day in and day out educating, nurturing, and supporting other people's children, continue to suffer for having a family of their own? We are the teachers and the mothers of this city-- a city that prides itself on being one of the most progressive and socially conscious cities in the world- and we deserve to be fought for.
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Click below to watch an amazing documentary done by Broadly where the terrible state of maternity leave in our country is explored and exposed
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