Men Take Little Time For Paternity Leave

(credit: LOUISA GOULIAMAKI/AFP/Getty Images)

(credit: LOUISA GOULIAMAKI/AFP/Getty Images)

feldman_amy Amy Feldman
Amy E. Feldman is a business commentator and legal business...
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By Amy E. Feldman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - What does the law say about paternity leave?

On his radio show, former NFL quarterback Boomer Esiason had some pretty strong words for Mets 2nd basemen, Dan Murphy, who missed 2 games the first week of baseball season because his wife was giving birth.

According to Esiason, Murphy’s wife should have scheduled a C-section before the season so he didn’t have to miss work. Sensitive.

But Esiason has highlighted a very real difference between what the law says and what the man-code says because, under Federal law, a qualified employee has a right to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for the birth or adoption of a child, whether the employee is the mom or the dad. But, what dads can do legally and what they do actually, is different, at least according to a 2011 study of 1000 men by Boston College researchers who found that 75% of new dads took off a week or less after the birth of their child and only 1% took off more than 4 weeks. That could be because the law only provides for unpaid leave…

Or it could be because of the attitude toward paternity leave by men’s co-workers and radio hosts.

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