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See our guest post at the New America Foundation: Equality and Justice for All Families.

 

Inclusive Family Policies

on September 22nd, 2015 at 6:16:28 PM

Anne-Marie Slaughter's advocacy for better workplace policies for families (New York Times opinion piece "A Toxic Work World" 9/20/15) fails families with an at-home parent (mother or father) by pushing them out of the policy discussion. Slaughter claims that too many workplaces were designed for the "Mad Men" and "Leave it to Beaver" era and says: "Our families and our responsibilities don’t look like that anymore, but our workplaces do not fit the realities of our lives." First of all, it's insulting to families with an at-home parent to persist in comparing them to sit-com families; secondly by claiming "our families don't look like that anymore" she just erased families with an at-home parent from her policy-making concerns.

Slaughter is the President and CEO of the Washington DC think tank New America Foundation. Their own scholars have advocated for inclusive family policies - rather than policies such as universal child care which serve only some families while ignoring those who prefer to make other choices. Here is the comment I left on the Times Opinions Facebook page:

Why aren't you advocating for inclusive policies? Michael Lind summed up years of work by New America Foundation scholars in “The Next Social Contract.” He writes: “the most solvent, efficient, and equitable social contract is one based on a few simple, universal programs of social insurance.” Many other countries have been using these types of policies for years. Pointing to core American values, Lind calls for policies that confer “equal rights for all, special privileges for none.” The nonprofit organization Family and Home Network campaigns for such policies - inclusive family policies - which support parents equally regardless of how they choose to meet their income-earning and caregiving responsibilities: https://www.newamerica.org/asset-building/guest-post-equality-and-justice-for-all-families/

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