FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 14, 2021
Maddy McDaniel, Communications Director
[email protected] or 914-471-7716
BUSINESS LEADERS: INVESTING IN CARE IS GOOD FOR BUSINESS
Patagonia’s Hilary Dessouky: “If we fail working women, especially women of color, [as we rebound from the COVID crisis] we won’t have to scratch our heads and wonder why there is an alarming lack of representation of those critical groups in positions of leadership”
Thumbtack’s Jelena Djordjevic: “This pandemic taught all of us that we may be called on in an instant to provide care for a grandparent, parent, child…No one should have to choose between a paycheck and caring for a loved one.”
Small Business Owner Marcia St. Hilaire Finn: “The paid leave options of the Families First Act were a lifeline for my business and my employees just when we needed it…Now we must invest in a permanent care infrastructure.”
Underinvestment in Care Infrastructure Hurts the U.S. Economy and Disproportionately Harms Women, Particularly Black and Brown Women
Going Big On Care Infrastructure Investments Could Support The Creation Of 3 Million New Jobs.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, leaders from large and small small businesses advocated for robust investments in the care sector during a press call organized by Invest in America, PL+US: Paid Leave for the United States, and Main Street Alliance. A recording of the press conference is available upon request.
The coronavirus pandemic has exposed and exacerbated pre-existing cracks and inequities in the caregiving economy, as a lack of affordable care and paid leave forced more than 2.3 million women out of the workforce and pulled women’s participation in the labor force to the lowest it has been since 1988.
The investment in the care sector proposed in the American Jobs Plan and the forthcoming American Families Plan would create millions of new jobs for the women hit hardest by this crisis, generate hundreds of billions of dollars in new economic activity, and allow millions of women who have been pushed out of the labor force to return to their own careers.
Patagonia’s Hilary Dessouky, Thumbtack’s Jelena Djordjevic, and small business owner Marcia St. Hillaire Finn made the following statements:
“As we rebound from the pandemic, we need to provide our workforce with paid parental leave while ensuring that the people who’ve been most impacted – women and people of color – return to an environment that offers the support all caregivers need, including childcare and paid medical leave” said Hilary Dessouky, general counsel at Patagonia and a mother of two daughters. “If we fail working women, especially women of color, we won’t have to scratch our heads and wonder why there is an alarming lack of representation of those critical groups in positions of leadership, boardrooms and public office.”
“This pandemic taught all of us that we may be called on in an instant to provide care for a grandparent, parent, child or other loved one,” said Jelena Djordjevic, Head of People, Thumbtack. “It has made clear the need for investments in paid family leave. No one should have to choose between a paycheck and caring for a loved one.”
“The paid leave options of the Families First Act were a lifeline for my business and my employees just when we needed it,” said Marcia St. Hilaire Finn, owner of Bright Start Early Care and Preschool in Washington, D.C. “It’s important to know these programs will be there when we need it. That’s why it was so important to extend the provisions for the duration of the pandemic. Now we must invest in a permanent care infrastructure. We need to do all we can to help people stay connected to their jobs and still take care of their families.”