sharing your stories and remembering your children
By: Maria Servold EPLA Editor
Anyone who has suffered a miscarriage knows the sorrow that follows in the aftermath of the loss itself. Many times, women must return to work soon after a miscarriage, as they may be unable to take paid time off or feel uncomfortable asking for time off.
At the end of March, New Zealand’s parliament voted in a law that will provide three days of paid bereavement leave to mothers and their partners after a miscarriage. While some private companies may already offer paid bereavement leave for miscarriage, New Zealand’s national movement sets a great example for the rest of the world.
Mothers and fathers who experience loss should not feel awkward or guilty for taking time off to grieve; nor should they have to use paid sick time in the wake of a miscarriage.
As quoted in the Washington Post, Ginny Anderson said, “The grief that comes with miscarriage is not a sickness, it is a loss.”
According to the Post article, the United States has no laws in places about paid leave after a miscarriage or stillbirth. We acknowledge that many companies probably have their own miscarriage bereavement policies, but it would be great to see national recognition of the need for such leave.
Maria Servold is an Editor at the EPLA, Assistant Director of the Herbert H. Dow II Program in American Journalism, and Lecturer in Journalism at Hillsdale College.