When a woman gives birth, she is usually allowed to take 12 weeks of
unpaid leave. But many women can’t afford to take that much time off
work. Now North Dakota State employees have a progressive new benefit
that’s become a popular addition to the workplace.
gave birth to her son Eli about 4 months ago. She says she didn’t know
what to expect participating in the new program, “I was kind of worried
at first that he might cry a lot or something. But I think if anything,
he loves coming here and seeing everyone on a daily basis"
for Roehrich with the ‘Infant at Work’ benefit at the Department of
Commerce, she was able to return to work earlier and still spend time
with baby Eli. She says, “The first couple of months of life with babies
is so crucial to be there to bond with them, I really think a lot of
parents are torn and feel guilty because they can’t give 100 percent to
both work and their new child and so with this program you don’t have to
Amanda Remynse is expecting a child soon and hopes to
use the program as well. Until then though she says she can learn by
observing and asking questions, using it as a helping hand into
She says, “I’m able to see what other mothers are
doing, what products they’re using. You know it’s a really great support
network that probably wouldn’t have been identified if a baby wouldn’t
have been in the office.”
Roehrich recommends the program to all
businesses, “I came back after six week’s full-time and I had no problem
doing that. I would have taken longer without the program.“
program allows newborn babies the ability to stay in the workplace up
until six-months-old. Workers who don’t have a baby in the office say
they enjoy having the babies around.
Copyright 2016 KING
Funny that King5 (Seattle station) is reporting on this in North Dakota, when Washington State’s Department of Health has been doing this, too (It may be broader; I only know about DoH). My parents both work there – they’re thrilled, say it’s been great for morale, and always tell me about the new ‘office baby.’ Dad was a bit sad when the last one in his office aged out at 6 months. (There’re guidelines – if a baby is routinely disruptive, then they can’t come, but it hasn’t been a problem thus far.)
Still not as good as paid leave, but it’s nice to see options.
Returning to work with baby
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