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April 8, 2008


Childcare solutions


The US has the stingiest parental leave policies in the world, so apparently some companies are now trying something new. According to a number of recent articles, at least 83 companies are now encouraging mothers to bring their pre-crawling babies to the office. There's even an organization dedicated to promoting Babies in the Workplace which claims that "having babies out in society gives people who otherwise don't see babies an opportunity to enjoy the calming and rejuvenating effect of them. " Uh-huh. I could say the same for puppies and loud hip-hop music.

As you can imagine, not all co-workers like the idea:

"I do not go to work every day to listen to the breeders' brats scream all day and to smell their baby poo diapers. And I certainly don't want to walk past a cubicle to see some woman breastfeeding her baby. NO."

Actually, that quote sounds like it's from someone who just hates kids in general.

There's a lot that doesn't seem good about this trend. As Zoe Williams points out: "If you're being asked to do your job and your childcare at the same time, the implication is that one of those things is not work."

Many of the bosses and parents quoted in these stories act like this is a great benefit. Compared to no paid parental leave, I guess it's not a bad thing. But I hardly think most parents would choose to bring their cute little screamer to work if they only had some more appealing options.

categories: Economics
posted by Cushie at 9:34 AM | #

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Well, that's f*cking stupid. If you're going to do that, why not just let the employee WORK FROM HOME???

And hey, I don't hate children, but I sure as hell don't want to walk through my office smelling dirty diapers, or hearing kids babble while I'm on the phone with a client.

Posted by: Charity at April 8, 2008 11:02 AM

A work environment is barely stimulating enough for adults (example A: me reading this blog right now). What kind of idiot thinks it's a good place for a baby?

This is just a cheap-ass way to get around employers paying for child care.

Posted by: T-Rock at April 8, 2008 12:14 PM

Another sutpid idea, imagine the office with 10 or more children in there.

Posted by: Bernard Lavilliers at April 10, 2008 5:03 AM

Apparently no one here or at the Guardian or at Time knows that "breeder" is a particularly virulent anti-heterosexual insult invented at the height of the Gay Rights Movement. It's at least the offensive equivalent of (pardon) "faggot."

On topic, this is a pretty terrible idea.

Posted by: at April 11, 2008 12:21 AM

Please rest assured that we know all about the term 'breeder.'

Posted by: cushie at April 11, 2008 12:32 AM

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