WHERE WOMEN GATHER FOR STRENGTH, ENCOURAGEMENT AND WISDOM
New York, Tuesday June 14, 2016 – There is a fatherhood revolution going on in the United States (U.S.). Men are doing – and are expected to do – more of the childcare and housework than ever before. This revolution of involved fatherhood has the power to advance gender equality, improve childhood development outcomes, and raise the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) by several hundred billion dollars, by enabling women to work outside the home at the same rate as men do. Despite this, the U.S. is not doing enough to support or advance the movement – in part because, until now, there has not been a clear or accurate national picture of the state of American fatherhood. This is revealed in the first ever State of America’s Fathers (SOAF) report, a landmark analysis of fatherhood unveiling preliminary, never-before-published data from the Families and Work Institute’s National Study of the Changing Workforce (NSCW).
As the U.S. turns to celebrate Father’s Day on Sunday, June 19, the SOAF report reveals that this fatherhood revolution is a highly unequal one. A tale of two fathers cuts down socioeconomic lines. At one end of the spectrum, society increasingly encourages upper- middle- and upper‐income fathers to be highly engaged with their children – with many Fortune 500 companies offering the paid parental leave to back this up. On the other end, low-income dads have the least access to paid leave in the country: 95% of low-wage workers do not have the option of taking paid family leave through their employers’ policies for the birth of a child or to care for a seriously ill family member. New data from the report reveals that one aspect which unites across lines is the inability of parents to manage their work and family responsibilities: the majority of parents (63%) who work from 35 to 40 hours a week, and nearly three quarters (73%) of those who work over 40 hours a week (at all jobs) feel that they do not spend enough time with their children.
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