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#WeLike: ‘Infants at Work’ Policy by Washington State Department of Health

  • JWB Post
  •  August 18, 2015

Washington State Department of Health allows bringing kids to work. This ‘Infants at Work’ policy is truly excellent!

The head of the agency, Carla Moquin, who initiated this idea, has some instructions and specific rules to address common concerns for other companies who want to follow the footsteps:

Babies cannot be disruptive: Parents must respond very quickly to the first sound of distress from the baby. Allow the working mothers to be ready to take care of the baby’s needs immediately.

The program is limited to babies who can’t yet crawl: The Washington State Department of Health policy allows only infants from 6 weeks to 6 months old.

Everybody still needs to get their work done: Productivity does go down for an employee who is taking care of a baby at work, but he or she will make up for it. Parents are so grateful for the opportunity to have their baby with them that they work really hard to make sure the critical tasks are completed; they stay late if they need to.

Parents need to pre-plan for back-up care: Typically, at least two coworkers volunteer to be available if the parent needs to go to a meeting or otherwise be away from the baby. Find employees who can act as a “co-parent.”

There should be a baby-free zone in place: This should be a part of the office far away from the new parent where people who are bothered by the baby’s presence could request to sit.

JWB strongly feels that such practices help retain employees, at that, empower working mothers. What do you think?

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