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Advancing the rights of working families.

The Need for Fairness in the Workplace


Many workplace norms and laws were developed over half a century ago, when a different workforce model and a different family model prevailed. In 1960, 70% of families had at least one parent at home full-time. Today, 70% of children are growing up in families headed by either a single working parent or two working parents. A Better Balance is a leader in the struggle to change laws and policies to better reflect the way Americans live and work today, like the fight for fair treatment for pregnant workers--join us & learn more here.


Fairness for Pregnant Workers

All too often, pregnant workers are pushed off the job when they just need a simple accommodation at work to stay healthy and employed. ABB is fighting to ensure no woman has to choose between her job and a healthy pregnancy! Read more in our Fairness for Pregnant Workers webpage!

Pregnancy & Caregiver Discrimination 

Discrimination against workers because of their family responsibilities is all too common in today's workplaces. An employee with an excellent track record tells her boss she is pregnant and suddenly starts receiving negative reviews.  A young man whose mother is fighting cancer is fired after asking for a part-time schedule at work so he can care for her.  A new mother is passed over for an opportunity in favor of a male coworker because her boss doesn't want a woman with a baby representing his business.  A pregnant retail worker who wants a stool to sit on at the cash register is told she cannot be accommodated and is fired.  We need better laws and stricter enforcement to prevent such unfair treatment and remove this obstacle to caregivers' success at work. 

The Pregnancy Penalty: How Motherhood Drives Inequality & Poverty in New York City

Pregnant Workers at Walmart

Family Responsibilities Discrimination

Families @ Work Legal Clinic 

Relevant Testimony & Comments
pdficon  Testimony on New York City Proposed Int. No. 974-A June 2013
pdficon Comments Submitted for EEOC Meeting on Pregnancy and Caregiver Issues February 2012
   pdficon     Testimony on Maine Act to Protect Family Caregivers                     April 2009 
  pdficon    Testimony on New York City Proposed Int. No. 565-A                   December 2007     

Family Status Discrimination in New York

A Better Balance is the leader of a multi-year campaign to fight family status discrimination in New York State. Mothers are paid 5% less per child than their childless peers, while fathers also face punishment at work when they take on family caregiving responsibilities. The maternal wage penalty drags down wages for women, exacerbating the wage gap. ABB is fighting for protections that would end discrimination against parents in the workplace in New York. Read more about this bill here.

Fair Pay

Mothers are the breadwinner or co-breadwinner in two thirds of American families.  Twenty-four percent of children in the U.S. live in single-mother-lead households with one breadwinner.  Women's earnings are critical to their families' economic security and yet women earn, on average, only 77 cents for every dollar their male counterparts are paid.  Working mothers and their families deserve fair pay. 

ABB Fact Sheet on Fair Pay

Fair Pay for Federal Contractors

Fair Pay in New York State

Equal Pay in New York State Contracting


Relevant Testimony


  Testimony before New York State Assemblymembers about Fair Pay in NY

December 2011


  Testimony before the New York City Council about Wal-Mart

    February 2011     

  Testimony before the New York City Council Women's Issues Committee      

June 2010

Fair Work Schedules and Flexible Work Arrangements

Nearly half of all workers in the U.S. are responsible for the care of a child or elder relative but few have access to flexible work arrangements to help them manage those responsibilities.  Nearly 80% of workers would like to have more flexible work options and would use them if there were no negative career consequences. Existing law does little to help these workers and we can do better.

In particular, low-wage workers face a critical and growing problem of abusive scheduling practices.  The great majority of retail workers in New York City receive a week or less of advance notice of their schedules, and almost half had their schedules changed without their consent. Hours—and paychecks— vary from month-to-month and week-to-week. Such practices make arranging childcare and transportation a daily struggle, prevent workers from advancing their education or taking a second job, and make effective budgeting impossible. Legislation at all levels of government is urgently needed to ensure that workers can have a fair say in their schedules.

Part-Time Work

Telecommuting and the Right to Request Flexible Work

Breastfeeding at Work: Break Time and Support for Nursing Mothers


ABB Fact Sheets and Reports

                                            Relevant Testimony & Comments
pdficon A Better Balance Presentation on Local Progress Webinar: Policy Solutions for a Fair Workweek in Your State and City July 2014
pdficon A Better Balance Letter in Opposition to the Working Families Flexibility Act of 2013 April 2013
pdficon Testimony before the New Hampshire House Labor Committee on Workplace Flexibility   

February 2009

pdficon Testimony on Family-Friendly Work Policies before the New York City Council

October 2008


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