LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – A Texas congressman is leading a movement in Washington D.C. that aims to allow fathers to take paternity leave. He hopes to inspire his colleagues to pass legislation that would allow dads to spend more time with their newborns.
Only 9% of companies in America allow for paid time off for new dads. Even when fathers can take time off, many don’t believe they should. Most take two weeks or less off.
Democratic congressman Colin Allred, a former NFL Linebacker, has taken time off twice to be a dad. His time off was the first paternity leave ever announced by a member of congress. And he did it again after his wife gave birth to their second child.
“It was really important to me. I mean, I– I grew up without a father. But whole life, I thought, when I have a chance to be a father, I’m gonna be a good dad. I’m gonna be there. And, you know, I think in our household, my wife and I try to keep things as equal as possible. And this was part of that,” he said.
Allred says that many dads feel like they don’t deserve to take time off as they didn’t physically have the baby. Allred wants to address the expectation that only the mom will be home with the baby.
He says that’s not right.
The United States is one of only two countries in the world that doesn’t guarantee paid parental leave.
President Joe Biden has proposed giving workers 12 weeks of paid leave under the American Families Plan, but it’s only a proposal.
Check out the full interview in the video below.