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Paid family leave laws cut women's workforce dropout rates by 20%

January 08, 2020 / Valerie Bolden-Barrett

Within states that have paid parental leave policies, 20% fewer women leave their jobs in the first year after having a baby, a new Institute for Women's Policy Research study revealed. The reduction surges to 50% in the five years following a new child, according to a Jan. 3 release from the study's funder, March of Dimes. The study also found that without paid leave, 30% of women will leave the workforce within a year after a new child's arrival, and 20% won't return from leave in 10 or more years. Study results showed that educated women benefited the most from paid family leave benefits; the study revealed increases in labor force participation in educated women until eight years after the birth of a child.