Mothers who lost their newborns in day care start petition of longer parental leave
Amber Scorah, who lost her newly born baby in day care, wishes to hear more on parental leave from Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump.
Heartbreaking Story of Scorah and Dodd
Last year, Scorah took a maternity leave of three months after birth of her son. Despite the leave policy of her work being more generous, as compared to other employers, she felt that three months just wasn’t enough. She was having a hard time leaving her 15-week old infant and she even asked her employer if taking more time off was possible. However, if she had to keep her job, she had to go back to work. So, she had to take her baby Karl to day care, just like most American working moms. Unfortunately, the baby died on the very first day of day care.
Scorah even wrote an article in New York Times parenting blog. In the article, she wrote, “I saw my some on a changing table, unconscious. His face and lips were blue and the owner of the day care was incorrectly performing CPR on him.” The cause of the baby’s death was inconclusive.
The story of Ali Dodd is not much different from that of Amber Scorah. Shepard, the son of Dodd, died due to improper care on the sixth day at day care. A childcare worker did not timely check on him; as a result, he suffocated in the car seat. Dodd’s baby was just 11-weeks old when he was sent to day care. He wasn’t even big enough to be able lift his own head. Unlike Scorah, Dodd didn’t get any paid leave.
Frightening Rate of infant mortality in the US
Scorah says that she understands that what happened to them was a worst case scenario, but she also refers to study which shows that the infant mortality rate of America is higher than any other industrialized nation.
As much as 90% if deaths occurred due to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome happen before the baby is six months old.
The Department of Labor has indicated that 12% of non-government workers in US have access to paid family leave. The Family Medical Leave Act provides an unpaid job protected leave of 12 weeks; however several workers do not qualify for that. The US does not offer paid leave to parents, unlike other countries such as New Zealand, Russia, France and Spain. These countries provide a minimum of 14-week paid maternity leave.
The mothers have started a petition
In spring, Dodd and Scorah started a petition in change.org, in which they asked the government to provide paid maternity leave. Till date, the petition has been signed by more than 135,000 people. This brings in hope that parents will get a lot more than just three months of maternity leave.
Dodd, who is currently pregnant, doesn’t have any paid leave this time as well. She is frustrated with the whole situation, which is quite natural given that she lost her son last year. Her baby is due next month and her family has offered to help with her care.