Everyone Deserves Child Care

A recent decision in the Eastern District of New York (Erhard v. Lahood) held that an man was discriminated against when he was denied the right to take leave to care for his children, unlike his female coworkers. The decision is important not only for men, but also for women. Any policy or attitude that views men’s childcare responsibilities as less important, or less deserving, also assumes that women should be the primary caregivers. It denies a father’s place in his children’s lives and also lessens the importance of women’s roles in the workplace. After all, if men can’t take time off to care for the children, then women must be the ones doing so.  And that’s not fair to either parent. Men and women need to be considered equal – as workers and as parents.