In recognition of Father’s Day, the New York State Department of Labor is highlighting the state’s nation-leading paid parental leave initiatives. The reminder follows an announcement by Governor Hochul on the expansion of New York’s fully paid parental leave program covering more than 150,000 state employees. Recent agreements with the three largest State unions – CSEA, PEF, and UUP – will make workers eligible to receive 12 weeks of fully paid leave to use for bonding with a newborn, fostered, or adopted child.
Additionally, as part of the Governor’s ongoing support for New York workers and their families, the New York State Department of Labor is set to launch a groundbreaking campaign focused on raising awareness about the benefits of paternity leave. As recommended by Governor Hochul's March 2023 Gender Wage Gap Report, this campaign aims to shift the perception of paternity leave and encourage fathers to take advantage of the available benefits.
“Paternity leave is not only a critical step towards achieving gender equality, but it also has profound positive effects on families and the overall well-being of our society,” said New York State Department of Labor Commissioner Roberta Reardon. “By challenging societal norms and encouraging fathers to take time off, we can create a more balanced and supportive environment for both men and women in the workforce. Together, we can close the gender wage gap, strengthen family bonds, and build a brighter future for all New Yorkers."
The awareness campaign, to be available in English and Spanish, will include social media posts, digital outreach, and a series of informational and testimonial-style videos that feature Lieutenant Governor Antonio Delgado discussing his paternity leave story following the births of his children.
All the videos and more information are available on the DOL’s Paternity Leave Hub.
While the number of men taking some form of leave following the birth of their first child has increased to 66.5%, compared to 96% for women, men typically take shorter periods of leave. On average, paternity leave in the United States lasts only one week, while maternity leave for women spans approximately 11 weeks (PEW Research). However, studies have shown that when fathers take paternity leave, it helps equalize the long-term career and salary prospects of women earners, contributing to the closure of the gender wage gap.
With New York State's leading paid parental leave, company-provided paternity leave, and other options like paid time off, many men now have a greater ability take leave following the birth of their children.
For more information about NYSDOL’s paternity leave campaign and resources available, please visit dol.ny.gov/paternityleave.
New York has long led on parental and family leave benefits, enacting the statewide Paid Family Leave law in 2016. In 2021, Governor Hochul signed legislation expanding the law to include caring for a seriously ill sibling. For more information, visit paidfamilyleave.ny.gov/.