Working Moms: A Balancing Act


Karen Czarnecki, deputy assistant secretary of labor, said requiring companies to offer such benefits were bad for business.

"I think mandating such benefits across employers of all kinds will hurt our economy," she said. "We'd end up losing jobs. I really think the economic consequences would be dire."

Furthermore, she notes, it's not the kind of system we've chosen to be governed by.

"We believe in free markets here. We believe in letting individuals make choices for themselves, and not giving all of those decisions to government."

Time for Change

Working moms say they've been on their own too long in a world still dominated by men.

"Women's issues are undervalued period, end of story," Evans said. "Women have a very quiet voice because we don't have very many bodies in the places of power."

With a change in Senate leadership and Nancy Pelosi set to be the new speaker of the House, will women's issues have to remain on the back burner?

Joan Blades, founder of Moms Rising, a new organization supporting motherhood and family issues, says that while mothers care passionately about the issues they're facing, most think their problems are unique.

"They each think it's their own individual problem, or just them and their friends," Blades said.

Working mom Martha O'Connor conceded that "We all talk about it -- but no one really talks about it."

Another mom added, "No one steps up to take action."

Moms Rising, however, already has 55,000 members and new powerful supporters in Washington, D.C.

Blades says the group is committed to finally making a difference.

"We need to organize politically and make it really clear to our leaders not only do they need to say nice things about mothers and children and families, they need to make this country family friendly," she said.

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