Professionals Bringing their Baby to Work? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 07-26-2005, 06:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I was speaking to an American friend of mine that lives in Germany that was telling me that most businesses there have a day care at or near their work, sponsored by their employers or the government, that allows them to bring their young children to work with them and see them throught the day if they choose to go back to work before their child is 2 yrs old. This applies to all fields, including lawyers, business women and other professionals! (This is besides the fact that they can get up to 2 yrs paid maternity leave...)

I may be asking a question that I already know the answer to, but, are there any of you out there that either work for a company or knows of a company in the US that does this? Specifically, I am asking about this possibility for women who work in the private business environment who are in business or legal fields. Whether the company pays for the service or not is irrelevant... I have heard of this in schools for moms who are teachers, but not in other fields.

I am hoping to find some good examples so that I can propose something of the sort to my company when the time comes...I am a business professional and I want to keep my job and I want to come back to work after a few months of maternity leave. BUT, I want to have my child with me or very near to me so I can see the baby throughout the day. I want too much?

Wanting it all,
Baby Z
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#2 of 11 Old 07-26-2005, 09:06 PM
 
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I honestly know of no legal firms in the midwestern market that have on-site day care. I think that you've got to remember that law firm life is generally still really, really conservative -- to the point that they haven't even caught on to the 40 hour work week, much less in-house day care. I would guess your best bet would be some larger federal agencies (I hear that the big EPA office in california has on-site daycare) or state or city governments, or perhaps bigger and very progressive companies that have the option available to all their employees. But in the legal feild, it would pretty much have to be somewhere that doesn't work with billable hours, otherwise I can't imagine that it would make sense for the company.

That said, I work for a mid-sized very progressive company, and we're worlds away from having on-site child care... the closest we have is a day care a couple of blocks away that offers a hefty discount to our employees and allows parents to stop in during the day and nurse.

Spending all of my money and time on this wild, wild life.
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#3 of 11 Old 07-26-2005, 11:59 PM
 
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On-site childcare is, I believe, becoming more and more rare - and it wasn't terribly common to begin with. By adding an on-sight child care center a company is going into another business. I'm finding in my reading on the topic (i'm in HR) that companies are more likely to partner with local childcare facilities to offer discounts than open their own center.

Of course there are exceptions but they tend to be very large companies.

We allow parents to bring their kids to the office and we are currently looking into partnering with outside providers but we will not open an on-site care center.
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#4 of 11 Old 07-27-2005, 04:32 AM
 
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I'm an attorney who works for a firm with three offices in two states and three cities. My firm allows me to bring my newborn to work with me.
There really are family-friendly firms out there.
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#5 of 11 Old 07-27-2005, 01:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, alaska, that's great. Thanks for all the responses, ladies.

I work for a "progressive" renewable energy company (in Texas). We're moving downtown in a couple of months so hopefully I'll have more day care options closer to work. It's just so frustrating at how far behind we are in this nation. I think that I will talk to HR about what kind of options they provide when I actually do get pregnant (still in the planning phase). We have a lot of family financial obligations (my husband's mother is very ill, my brother is a recently injured quariplegic) so we will both have to continue to work and I will probably only be able to take 3 mos leave... That's not to say that I wouldn't come back to work without those obligations, I think that I would, and just as quickly, I really love what I do and I love working, but I would probably hire a nanny, which we won't be able to afford now.

I hope that other mamas respond as I am so interested in everyone's very unique arrangements.
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#6 of 11 Old 07-27-2005, 02:31 PM
 
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I work for a really conservative Fortune 100 company in the southeast, and we have no childcare on site or any talk of it. It really is a shame, but the company is still mainly male dominated in its thinking, sand by the kind of males who don't find this topic a priority (trying to change that, but its a long road!). You might want to check out some of the "Best Places to Work for Mothers" lists (I think Working Mother mag publishes one) as they ususally detail the onsite childcare options.

Good luck!
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#7 of 11 Old 07-29-2005, 12:52 PM
 
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We didn't take advantage of this option since I was a SAHM at the time, but when my DH worked for his previous employer, Johnson & Johnson, they did offer daycare at some of their locations. It was through Bright Horizons, but it was on the J&J campuses. Same thing at Bank of America - BH had a contract, but their facility was located in a BoA building.

eta: it was NOT free. It was only for employees, but you still had to pay a fairly hefty tuition. Of course, there's the convenience factor.
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#8 of 11 Old 07-29-2005, 04:29 PM
 
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I think onsite care is pretty rare. When I asked about bringing baby to work for a while, I was told that it meant baby was covered by worker's comp and they didn't want the premiums or liability. And I think its mostly liability that scares companies from taking this road. Even those that have on-site centers frequently use an outside company for this reason. If your in the legal field, I'm sure you know all about this!
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#9 of 11 Old 07-30-2005, 12:03 AM
 
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I'm also in Texas, and I work for a mid-sized tech company. We have no on-site daycare options, but we have a discount set up with a daycare in town -- maybe 10 or 15%?

I actually have been doing a lot of research about this lately because we're in the planning stages right now and I wanted to know how likely it would be to get my company to implement something like on-site daycare in a year or two before we're TTC. In my research, I found out that Working Mother magazine puts out a list of the top 100 companies for working mothers: http://www.workingmother.com/bestlist.html

It's very heartening to read about all the different types of companies that offer on-site daycare. I especially enjoyed reading about the duck pond at AFLAC.

If you want to make something like that happen at your workplace, it might help to get together with a group of women and start some sort of women's group first. A lot of those 100 best companies have a women's leadership network of some sort, and that can be a great force to be reckoned with! Here's an organization that could be a good resource if you want to start a group like that: http://www.catalystwomen.org/ I'm in the process of trying to get a group like this started at my company, so if any of you out there have done something like that or been involved with a similar group, I'd love to hear from you!

All in all, no, it's not common in the US for companies to have on-site daycare. But then the US workplace environment is centered around the traditional male lifecycle of working your brains out in your youth, and in general there's not a whole lot of flexibility for working mamas or papas. I'm sure most of us know women who have left the workplace because there wasn't enough flexibility. We need to make the case to our workplaces that they're losing trained, talented workers by not providing more flex options for working parents.

I think it's going to take a combination of us changing mindsets at individual workplaces and women getting our act together politically to bring about real change in that department.

my .02!

Expecting #2 in May 2013!

0***4***8***12***16***20***baby.gif***28***32***36***40

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#10 of 11 Old 07-30-2005, 12:44 AM
 
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I work as a post-doc at a research center and I've been bringing my almost 9 month old to work with me since a few weeks after he was born. We have daycare here, but they hsve to be 2, so a lot of folks have done some kind of similar thing.

Vegan, mom to : Joe and Josh ::
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#11 of 11 Old 07-31-2005, 10:26 AM
 
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Yes, I do. I am a nurse practitioner and all of the large hospitals in my health care system have on site childcare.
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