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Why moms are in desperate need of maternity leave

Ask any Milwaukee family and they will tell you having a child is not an easy endeavor. Cravings to childbirth are just the beginning. After bringing the little bundle of joy home families face numerous challenges both in and outside the home.

Childcare, diapers, clothing and baby food all cost money. Many families working paycheck-to-paycheck rely on both parents' income to stay afloat. These working mothers often are not employed by companies that offer extensive maternity benefits. Many times these employers offer no paid maternity leave at all, leaving struggling new mothers with no choice but to return to work earlier.

Maternity leave also does not mean job protection, as one South Carolina mother experienced after being laid off from her job shortly after returning from maternity leave. The small company-under 50 employees-the Greenville woman worked for did not qualify for the benefits of the Family and Medical Leave Act. Under this act qualified employees can receive up to 12 weeks unpaid but job-protected maternity leave.

A mother and journalist from Oakland, California, is uniting women across the country. Her new website, WorkingMomsbreak.com, hopes to stand up for the rights of all working mothers. The organized online community of mothers continues to contribute to the national movement, Moms Rising, in hopes to move forward polices protecting working mothers at both congressional and state levels nationwide.

Expecting mothers wondering if their jobs will be protected during maternity leave can seek guidance from community-based originations like these or experienced employment attorneys.

Source: greenvilleonline.com, "Work after baby: Moms often face numerous challenges," Angie Campbell, Nov. 2, 2012

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