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Do Women with Children Get Preferential Treatment at Work?

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Recent reports in Australia and the UK have shed light on an issue that many global working women face: Do women with children get preferential treatment in the workplace?

Some women say yes, citing discriminatory practices in cases of requested leave and sympathy from employers—a disparity when it comes to gaining approval for vacation or early leave due to emergencies. One woman even says there’s a “cult of motherhood” in the UK, where mothers’ out-of-office lives are perceived as more significant than childless women’s.

“There’s an unbelievable permissiveness towards mothers at work,” says Jody Day, founder of Gateway Women, an organization that seeks to support, inspire and empower childless women. “If they’re bombarding their colleagues with child-related talk all day, it’s deemed acceptable, but if women without children talk about their lives in the same way, we’re seen as self-absorbed.”

Wow. Ya don’t say.

Read more at Black Enterprise

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  • marshallmews

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  • Cindy

    I’ve been on both sides of this debate. I had my kids late, therefore I was working for years without kids. I kept working when my 2 kids came along so I know what that is like. Now I am almost an empty-nester and still working full time. I, for one, always tried hard to keep my home life and work life separate, never expecting preferential treatment. But now, I look at the women I work with who have young kids and I really do feel their pain. There is so much stress involved in trying to succeed at being the best at both work and at home. I haven’t met too many working mothers who expect special treatment, but some is needed to help them through those years!

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  • jrandom421

    If you make no accommodation for women with children, and then put them in situations where they have to choose between the company or their children, the company is almost always going to lose.Then these women will wind up taking their knowledge, expertise, networks and themselves to companies that will make those accommodations.

    • UnixDesigner78

      More and more, that is happening with people of both genders, with or without children.

      Since the “recession ended,” (so-called), a record number of people have walked away from their jobs. Many are starting their own businesses.

      I tried my hand at entrepreneurship but in my 30s and married (a husband is family too), I need the benefits and stability of a F/t job.

      That said, if I’m expected to make that job my life, I won’t hesitate to seek greener pastures again. No one says, in their final years, “Gee, I wish I’d spent more time at work.”

      I also have to question what reality the author of this article lives in. At every office I have worked in, women with kids – or even women who merely wanted them down the road – were often not even hired. And if they were, they were never promoted. I got a lot of jobs most women aren’t privy to because I made it clear I have no interest in pregnancy, birth, and children, early, loud, and often.

      Certain illogical women chose to be offended by this, declaring that me working diminished their child-rearing, and that it was sooooo unfair that I make more than they do, but I see no reason to award someone a salary paid to people with 15 years of experience if they have only spent 5-6 years working.