The Power of the ONEsie

   By drodriguez  Sep 14, 2008

MomsRising is a grassroots organization that fights for equal rights for families. They campaign continuously for healthcare for all children, realistic wages, flexible work schedules, and maternity and paternity leave, to name just a few.

MomsRising groups are popping up in neighborhoods across the US. These community groups help create new ideas and lobby local politicians to to improve laws by state legislature that affect children and families.

The Power of the ONEsie campaign, which started in Washington State, is an impactful display of baby onesies that represent individuals who support the Family Leave Insurance bill but cannot take the time off from work or away from their families to be at the capital in person. The bill is designed to enable both parents to take paid time off from work when a child is born. The bill was passed in the House Appropriations Committee recently and the response to the ONEsie campaign has been encouraging. MomsRising and its volunteers plan to continue to lobby in Washington State, and to support those other states that also want to help pass the Family Leave Insurance bill.

Do you agree with the need for this type of leave and the aim of the Bill? Is this acceptable for those in the workforce who do not have children?

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gretchenfarricker by gretchenfarricker | Charlotte, NC
Oct 14, 2010

I think that this is a great idea. I do believe that both the father and mother should be able to take time off for maternity leave, because in some situations, problems arise with mother or baby during childbirth and it allows for the father to be able to take off that allotted time to be able to be there with his family to help out. The first few months are the most important and to be able to allow both parents to fully enjoy their child for the first months of life, allows for the family to bond better and grow as a family. The threat of losing a job if such problems arise adds unneeded stress which takes away from the most momentous time of someone's life.

sharman421 by sharman421 | TALLAHASSEE, FL
May 26, 2007

Both parents having maternity leave is only right! They both have the child and one shouldn't be more important than the other. More companies and job facilities should cater in other ways to couples with infants and young children as well. Working parents should be able to see their child at any time. On-site day care puts families first. Young children should be raised by their parents, not a baby-sitter or an institution.

lyriczntunes by lyriczntunes | norman, OK
May 23, 2007

These "family" oriented bills are a must if we as a country plan to change the current wrongs with society. Family is not nearly as important as it should be to "Corporate" America. Futhermore, The Family Medical Leave Act only refers to companies who fall under certain "guidelines" such as employee number and there is nothing that stipulates the time off has to be paid. Another issue that is not addressed is if a pregnancy becomes high-risk thus affecting a woman's ability to work even prior to the birth of her baby. Why should a woman have to choose between unemployment and the life of her unborn child? Let's face it, we need more legislation that is "family" friendly. Over the years, family has taken a backseat in our country. Wages do not pay enough to offset the cost of living, healthcare costs are over the top, education funding is down, drug and alcohol use is up, crime is up, neglect and abuse of children is up, divorce rate is up, and community support for families is down. We used to be a country who looked out for each other and now we are a country who fear each other or we are completely placid to the needs of each other. I support the work ONEsies is doing and it is long overdue that we stood up and demanded change from our government concerning the needs and issues of families. If we do not speak for families and children, who will?

lockliss by lockliss | lake grove, NY
May 19, 2007

I have been a stay at home mom since for 6 years. My husband was unaware of the family leave act when we had our first child. When we had our second child, he took the family leave act for 2 weeks, but could have taken off a month (he has over 400 sick hours)

cvarano by cvarano | BROOKLYN, NY
May 15, 2007

Both parents getting leave is such a wonderful idea. This is the first I'm hearing of this Bill. Maternity leaves definitely should be longer also. I feel like we are a nation of workaholics and if we aren't by nature then we are forced to be by our employers. We need to slow down, enjoy life, and be with our families more.

Salchipapa by Salchipapa | Riverview, FL
May 15, 2007

We moved to FL from Canada about 10 years ago and were apalled at how poor the benefits are here. Most companies don't give much vacation time to start off with and the maternity leave is pitiful. Fortunately, I worked for a CA based company when I had my first child and the laws are a bit stricter there. However, I still only got 6 weeks of paid leave (albeit at a higher rate than a FL company would pay). I opted to take 3 months off, which is what I was allowed to take without losing my job.

keulaidkid by keulaidkid | Levittown, PA
May 15, 2007

Luckily when I had my first child I had enough vacation time built up that I was able to take 12weeks...and then he was in the care of a family member...however with my second child I was forced to take the maximum 6 weeks allowed in my case...and thank goodness I am the stay at home mom during the day...I cant imagine people who have no other choice but to daycare their children at a mear age of 6 wks. We are so busy in our lives this day in age...I would love if this was put into effect!

shantiful by shantiful | OVERLAND PARK, KS
May 12, 2007

When I had my first Daughter I was able to use the family medical leave act. I had to use all my sick and vacation time to do it and was not able to ask co-workers (who said they would) donate hours to me because having a baby was not a life threatning event. I was still more lucky than some women who dont have any benifits.

sharon1953 by sharon1953 | apple valley, MN
May 11, 2007

families should be first,but in corporate america that is utopia and reserved for people who have money. companies dont care what they can do for you..but what you can do for them. and what they give you in benefits is what the law says they have to and if it gives them good tax incentives.

Zacksmom by Zacksmom | Blackwood, NJ
May 11, 2007

I support MomsRising and any bill to improve the current status of healthcare, improved wages, flex schedules and increased maternity/paternity leave compensation. There are not enough companies out there that realize happy employees are productive employees. In NJ mothers on leave are given disability for 6 to 8 weeks. For some, this is all the "paid" leave for a new mother and it is a total outrage. 6-8 weeeks provides time for the mother to physically heal from giving birth. It provides NO PAID TIME for the essential bonding needed between a mother and child in the crucial first stages of the baby's life. NJ does offer 20 weeks family medical leave and if we were all independently wealthy use of family medical leave for maternity purposes would be ideal, but let's be realistic! Increased or mandated paid maternity/paternity leave would be beneficial for the parents to be able to share more time with the baby and adjust to not only their new role as parents, but have time to try and establish a schedule for the baby which helps when parents and employers return to work (no sleep= lower productivity). Modern family life for all of us has changed dramatically from years past. It is time for Corporate America and our government to catch up with us and discuss how we can make this work better for everyone.

kellyp22 by kellyp22 | WARMINSTER, PA
May 10, 2007

I, too, had 12 weeks at home with my son. Although my boss was understanding to the situation, it would have been great to have the support of a LAW dictating that I could take 6 months with partial pay! Keep up the good work.

CarlysMommy by CarlysMommy | Tallahassee, FL
May 09, 2007

That sounds wonderful! I have a 9 month old daughter and would have loved to have been able to take 6 months off to take care of her. I was fortunate to be able to take 12 weeks off when she was born (using all of my vacation and sick time that I had been saving for years). Unfortunately, I had to have a C-section, and on top of that my daughter was very colicky for the first 11 1/2 weeks of her life - and it's hard to feel like you're bonding with a baby who is screaming and inconsolable all of the time. I would have loved an extra 3 months just to be able to really bond with her and enjoy her. It would have been beneficial to both of us for me to be there with her longer. My husband only took one week off with us, and that's only because I needed extra help (couldn't even get out of bed by myself for at least one week) since I had a C-section. If I hadn't had a C-section, my husband would have only taken 3 days off! I still needed help after my husband went back to work, so for another 1 1/2 weeks, my mom only worked half days and used her vacation time and came over to help me. There I was stuck at home alone with a new baby and I wasn't even allowed to drive either one of us to our doctor's appointments. I completely agree that this country has things backwards with regards to family. It seems like work ALWAYS comes first. While work is important, it shouldn't be what life is about.

mooberry13 by mooberry13 | Deptford, NJ
May 09, 2007

I work in Philadelphia and am currently waiting to see if I get enough "donated" time to take off of work to have my baby. (Due June 15th) To have that worry taken off my hands would be wonderful. Family should come first, and you shouldn't have to worry about how you're going to feed your kids when you're out of work for maternity leave. This sounds like a wonderful organization!

stereoscream by stereoscream | Oaklyn, NJ
May 09, 2007

I would have LOVED to stay home & take care of my daughter for 6 months to a year before HAVING to go back to work. This country has it's priorities backwards.

Toona54720 by Toona54720 | Altoona, WI
May 09, 2007

We're from Canada and when my kids were both born, you were allowed 6 months "parental" leave from work...with unemployment pay (2/3's). Now it's up to a year off. They have the right idea there, by putting family first.