Feb 20, 2019
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Dove fights for paternity leave in the US

Feb 20, 2019

Dove Men+Care is campaigning for paid paternity leave for US fathers, with the launch of a new petition.

The beauty giant's male grooming division has unveiled ‘The Pledge for Paternity Leave', a call to action for members of the public to sign, in order to raise awareness about the impact that paid leave policies can have on father-child bonding, supported by Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian. The brand hopes to use the pledge to inspire paternity leave policy change at a corporate and governmental level.

The Unilever-owned label has also committed to donating $1 million to fathers who are unable to take paid time off work, via its Dove Men+Care Paternity Leave Fund. The fund, which is currently accepting applications, will donate $5,000 grants to new and expectant dads through 2020.

"Since we launched in 2010, the Dove Men+Care brand has communicated that modern masculinity is defined by the way men care," said Nick Soukas, VP of Skin Cleansing & Baby Care for Unilever, in a statement. "By supporting this important initiative, our goal is to increase utilization rates of paid paternity leave for those men who have access to it and encourage other companies to come together and offer men paid paternity leave so they can take the time to care for their families."

The move comes after Dove found that less than one in five men in the US receive any paid paternity leave at all, and of those, many do not believe they can take the full amount of time offered. Although some 50% of dads believe they should take paternity leave, almost three-quarters claim that the workplace support to do so is lacking.

"Through my own experience becoming a father, I saw firsthand the importance of taking paternity leave and being there for my family during a critical time in our lives," said Ohanian. "Working with Dove Men+Care, I will continue to try to tackle some of the societal stigmas that exist around paternity leave, and advocate for paid leave to be a right for dads everywhere."

Dove first drew attention to the topic last summer, with the launch of a film dubbed "Dear Future Dads" that shed light on the issue, having found that 87% of men who have and use paternity leave benefits feel more satisfied overall with their lives.

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