The importance of paternity leave
Close father-child relationships benefit everyone – and not just in the ways you might expect: fathers closely connected to their children are actually healthier and have happier marriages. Children do better physically, mentally and emotionally (it’s called the “father effect”).
What paternity leave looks like now
Attitudes on how caregiving is shared between parents are beginning to expand – yet paternity leave is still uncommon. Although there’s an increasing demand for access to it, paternity leave policies aren’t being developed fast enough to keep up with the cultural shift – and many countries have no paternity leave law at all.
Another big barrier is restrictive masculine stereotypes: today’s dads want to be even more involved with their families (a bit different from the traditional provider of 50 years ago) but a fear of judgement and job security holds some men back from taking the paternity leave that is open to them.
Our paid paternity leave initiatives
1) Leading the way
We’re partnering with renowned fatherhood experts MenCare to set up the Dove Men+Care Global Paternity Leave Standard. Our policy will ensure that Dove Men+Care employees around the world get paid paternity leave, giving them the opportunity to be there for the people that matter to them most.
We’re continuing to learn more and more about what’s holding men back from taking paternity leave, and how we can help. Through global research, we will help challenge stereotypes, develop even better resources for guys, and champion better corporate and government policies.
2) Paternity Leave Resources
It’s one thing to strive towards paternity leave for everyone, but another thing for dads to feel comfortable taking it. It can be tough to figure out how to take paternity leave. So we’ve asked for the advice and experiences of dads who’ve been there and created some helpful digital resources based on what they told us. These dads are challenging parenting stereotypes, helping to pave the way for more fathers to feel confident taking paternity leave.
3) Working Together
We can’t change the world alone. We’re inviting other companies to join us in our commitment to paternity leave. And we invite you to join our movement for change. Sign up below to learn how you can get involved.
MenCare is a global initiative to promote men's and boys’ greater involvement as equitable, non-violent fathers and caregivers. MenCare has partners in over 45 countries who carry out evidence-based policy advocacy, campaigns, research, and programming to engage men in positive parenting, in equitable caregiving, in violence prevention, and in maternal, newborn, and child health.
MenCare believes that true gender equality will only be reached when men take on 50% of the world’s unpaid child care and domestic work, and that equal, nontransferable, paid parental leave is necessary to achieve this global goal. MenCare is coordinated by Promundo and Sonke Gender Justice, with Save the Children, Oxfam, PLAN Sweden and MenEngage Alliance serving as Steering Committee members.
MenCare produces a biennial State of the World's Fathers report, which has become a globally recognized source of data and information on the topic of men's full engagement in caregiving, and as a driver of action by governments, corporations and international organizations.