Planful Expands Maternity Leave Options for New Moms | EBA


Melissa Dreuth, chief of staff to the CEO and chief human resources officer at cloud-based financial planning and analysis platform provider Planful, is no stranger to the pressures. new mothers face in office.

“In my old company, there was this underlying pressure that as a working mom couldn’t be vulnerable at all,” she says. “For me that meant working until my due date – my water broke during a training session at the office.”

Bearing in mind her past experience, Dreuth recently led the expansion of Planful’s maternity leave policy. The program offers new moms a customizable $ 500 food allowance, applicable to services like DoorDash and UberEats, and a three-month supply of diapers, in addition to their maternity leave. Upon return, parents are eligible for an ‘Ease Back Program’ with the option of reduced working hours for the first three months after returning to work.

The two programs are also included for all types of families like adoptive and foster parents.

Read more: How PwC is helping working mothers pass COVID

“We are seeing these young parents or parents for the first time and it is such a great community that we are trying to create,” says Dreuth. “It will be a life changing experience for [them] but we want to be able to support them. “

Throughout the pandemic, mothers suffered more than any other demographic – nearly three million women have left the workforce completely since February 2020, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Of those women, 22% were black mothers, 20% were Asian mothers and 19% were Hispanic mothers, according to a study by WerkLabs and The Mom Project, a digital career community.

In addition to being more likely to lose a job, mental health is declining were also prevalent among working mothers. Sixty-eight percent of working mothers have sought mental health treatment during the pandemic, according to a survey by SilverCloud Health. This is compared to 47% percent of women without children, according to the KFF Health Tracking Surveys.

“In everything you do, you have to lead with an empathetic approach,” Dreuth says. “You have to think about how you can make this person becoming a parent feel comfortable enough that they can be open with their manager and with their business about what needs they need.”

Read more: Black and LatinX mothers fall off career track during COVID

Planful’s current maternity leave includes three months leave for mothers and six weeks for dads, both paid at 100% of the individual’s salary. Since the pandemic, more and more companies are developing their resources for the benefit of working parents by offering everything virtual daycare To pay sabbaticals.

The United States is the only country among 41 countries that does not have a mandatory paid leave program for new parents, according to data from the Pew Research Center. Despite the progress being made towards a more equitable workplace for women, there are still some steps to be taken.

“[Better maternity leave benefits] must be table stakes, ”says Dreuth. “You can’t grow a business and have a diverse talent pool if you don’t think about everything that makes that diverse talent pool in and of itself.”

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