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Getting Paid While Taking TimeGetting Paid While Taking Time

The Women's Movement and the Development of Paid Family Leave Policies in the United States

Megan Sholar


Book published by Temple University Press


The United States remains the only industrialized nation in the world that does not provide paid family leave at the national level for either men or women. In the more than two decades since the passage of the Family and Medical Leave Act, there have been numerous unsuccessful attempts to expand family leave benefits nationally. However, in the United States, it is common for innovations in family policies to arise at the state level.

n her timely book, Getting Paid While Taking Time, Megan Sholar explains the development of family leave policies at both the national and state levels in the United States. She provides cogent studies of states that have passed and proposed family leave legislation, and she pays special attention to the ways in which women's movement actors and other activists (e.g., labor unions) exert pressure on public officials to help influence the policymaking process. In her conclusion, Sholar considers the future of paid family leave policies in the United States and the chances for it ever equaling the benefits in other countries.

Megan Sholar is a Lecturer in the Interdisciplinary Honors Program at Loyola University Chicago.

REVIEWS:

Getting Paid While Taking Time investigates the puzzle of why the U.S. lacks a paid parental leave, being one of the few countries in the world without one. Examining both the state and national levels, and taking the long historical arc of policy-making into consideration, Sholar offers an original and persuasive account that shows how the women's movement has influenced these policies. Sholar marshals strong evidence and sheds new light on this vitally important policy area.”

—Kimberly J. Morgan, Professor of Political Science and International Affairs at the George Washington University

Getting Paid While Taking Time is a very refreshing book: timely, thoughtful, thorough, well-referenced, well-organized, and well-written. Sholar covers important and necessary historical details and captures the complexities of state government quite well. In addition, her coverage of the women activists groups, the challenges they faced, and the strategies they employed is new and important for readers to learn. This book represents a much-needed update on the status of paid leave in the United States.”

—Steven K Wisensale, Professor of Public Policy, Human Development and Family Studies at the University of Connecticut





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