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The workplace: challenges for fathers and their use of leave [r-libre/1703]

Harvey, Valérie, & Tremblay, Diane-Gabrielle (2019). The workplace: challenges for fathers and their use of leave. In Moss, Peter; Duvander, Ann-Zofie, & Koslowski, Alison (Ed.), Parental leave and beyond. Recent international developments, current issues, future directions (p. 223-240). Bristol : Policy Press. ISBN 9781447338772

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Item Type: Book Sections
Refereed: Yes
Status: Published
Abstract: Up to the present day, public gender equality policies have aimed to improve women’s situation by giving them rights equal to those of men or supporting positive discrimination. But this has not been sufficient to ensure effective equality between men and women. Indeed, Esping-Anderson (2009) does not hesitate to qualify the movement that began in the twentieth century as an ‘incomplete revolution’. Women are still earning less than men per hour for full-time jobs and they often perform several ‘jobs’: career woman, domestic worker and carer. This creates tensions that weigh on the shoulders of these ‘superwomen’, trying to combine their careers with family life and household chores (Conway, 2003). An enduring unequal division of housework not only makes work–life integration extremely difficult, but may even have a negative impact on the birth rate (Holloway, 2010, p.178). Should future public policies designed to achieve genuine gender equality be aimed not at women, but at men? In an arena such as work–family balance, it may well be a prerequisite for gender equality. According to the OECD, the involvement of fathers is not only essential to the welfare of the family, but it has an impact on the perception of workplaces regarding female employees and wage inequality: This chapter examines the opportunities that Paternity and Parental Leaves create for fathers, based on the findings of two qualitative studies of leave-taking fathers in Québec. It reveals some difficulties encountered in the workplace by fathers who do take leave, such as being asked to take a shorter leave, to postpone the taking of leave, or to compromise part of their leave by working from home (telework). We also investigate the problems that arise when fathers, upon their return to work, try to reconcile new family responsibilities with their previous routine working schedule. We consider the literature before presenting our findings from extensive interviews with fathers. To support our conclusions, we use extracts from these interviews relating to discussions which the fathers had with their employers. Altogether, just over 60 interviews were conducted: around 30 interviews with fathers who took Paternity Leave and, in some cases, Parental Leave, being at home alone with their child, and drawn from a variety of sectors and occupations (Tremblay and Lazzari Dodeler, 2015); and a similar number with fathers in the IT multimedia sector, many of whom encountered challenges in the use of the parental Leave, in particular with regard to timing and length.
Depositor: Tremblay, Diane-Gabrielle
Owner / Manager: Diane-Gabrielle Tremblay
Deposited: 06 Jun 2019 12:42
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2019 16:57

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