Forming A Family – The importance of exploring paid family leave
Family formation is a cornerstone step in the success sequence. It also is a difficult topic to address. We know family is important to upward mobility and opportunity, but how do we foster it? One initiative being discussed, even at a national level, is paid family leave.
Why Time Together Matters
Recently I took the family on a vacation. We slept in a hotel room with beds mere feet from each other, shared street-vendor meals, crammed into a small vehicle and drove hours together, and walked miles side-by-side for seven straight days.
When we came home, we were tired, smelly and done being with each other. Each child (and adult) immediately found their own room and spent some much needed alone time. Since then, however, we have spent more time hanging out and talking. Less time on our phones and more time just being together. But why?
Because even for an introvert like myself, connection with each other and the bonds of a family are strengthened by proximity.
Time Together Establishes Healthy Relational Bonds
These bonds are even more important at a young age. Time with our children, especially in their infancy, is important to establishing lifelong healthy attachments. These healthy relationships will be the basis for family formation in a child’s life.
That is why we are taking the lead on the discussion of paid family leave. Creating an open dialogue that outlines, not just the importance, but the manner in which we institute such a system is vital to the support of stronger families. The U.S. is one of the only first-world nations that has not addressed this issue at a policy level.
The issue is particularly impactful to the stability and formation for families in lower income areas. It is why Georgians and the Georgia Center for Opportunity must take the lead on guiding conversations on this.