By: Kim Donoghue, A Better Balance Community Advocate

I became pregnant with my first child after my husband and I moved to New Mexico. I immediately started looking for work after moving because we desperately needed the additional income. We were living in a tiny one-bedroom apartment with two dogs, constantly tracking our expenses; I could only afford to purchase one pair of maternity pants and one top.

After spending months applying for positions, I got a job working in marketing for a government agency four months short of my due date. I had to submit multiple inquiries to my…


Consider this: who is your family? For some, family is a parent, a sibling, an aunt or uncle; for others, family is a significant other, a best friend, a non-biological child. Now consider this: would you be able to take leave from work to care for your family members if they had a health-related need? Would they be able to take care of you if you had a health emergency? Every year, millions of workers throughout the U.S. …


By: Samantha K., A Better Balance Community Advocate

I work for a large grocery store chain on Long Island, and I am a mom. My son is 10-years-old and has Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), among other health conditions. Because of the level of medical care he requires, we needed to move him into a residential treatment facility more than two hours away from our home to get him the help he needed.

As a full-time employee whose family is dependent on my paycheck, I was only able to visit with my son on weekends, and I struggled to pick him…


By Natasha Jackson

Natasha Jackson lives and works in Charleston, South Carolina. She is also an A Better Balance Community Advocate.

In 2008, I was pushed out of my promising career just because I was pregnant and needed to avoid heavy lifting at work — my family went from thriving to homeless in a matter of months. My son is now thirteen years old and I’ve watched in horror during the pandemic as woman after woman, including so many Black mothers like me, have been pushed off their jobs, for many reasons, but often because they were pregnant and needed…


Por: Cassandra Gomez y Astrid Reyes

El 2020 fue un año difícil: todos los neoyorquinos han tenido que enfrentar los desafíos que nos ha presentado el COVID-19, y muchos han tenido que navegar el trabajo mientras balancean el cuidado de seres queridos y de sí mismos. En A Better Balance, cada día oímos de parte de trabajadores sobre estos desafíos a través de nuestra línea de ayuda gratuita, desde los que han recibido pruebas positivas de COVID-19 y necesitan tomar tiempo fuera del trabajo para hacer cuarentena, hasta los que están preguntándose si tendrán tiempo para vincularse con un nuevo…


By Dina Bakst

On October 26, the Senate approved Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s appointment to the Supreme Court. Given the clear bias of Judge Barrett against the rights of women and all those without access to power in this country, her nomination is an insult to the legacy of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who spent her career using the law to break down gender barriers, consistently fighting to make the promise of equal rights under our Constitution and laws a reality.

Judge Barrett’s appointment also serves as a painful reminder that millions of women can’t balance their way out of…


In response to the ongoing public health crisis, Congress passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). Among other provisions, the FFCRA gives covered workers the right to paid time off from work for a variety of coronavirus-related reasons — the first time in American history that a federal law has guaranteed the right to paid leave. The law’s groundbreaking paid leave provisions provide essential protections to millions of workers, but a combination of statutory and regulatory exceptions potentially leave out as many as 106 million employees nationwide. …


By Meghan Racklin, Molly Weston Williamson, and Dina Bakst

Imagine a plumber who has just received a call from a potential customer who needs work done immediately. The plumber drives over to the potential customer’s house with his tools, ready to work. When he arrives, the customer realizes that the plumber is Muslim, and refuses to hire him because of his religion. Because the plumber is an independent contractor, he may have no legal recourse.

Now imagine a rideshare driver. She is frequently sexually harassed by customers, and has made the rideshare company aware of the situation, but they have…


As the number of people infected with COVID-19 continues to rise in the U.S. and abroad, the need for workplace paid leave policies has become increasingly apparent. However, even in times of emergency, it is of great importance that proposed paid leave policies provide adequate protection to workers, including allowing workers time off to care for all of their loved ones.

American families are structurally complex and diverse, making a family definition that allows workers to care for a broad range of their loved ones — and not just those to whom they are biologically or legally related — a…


By Virginia James

I am a person with disabilities — I have severe asthma and diabetes — and they can be paralyzing when they act up. I am also a hard worker, which I take a lot of pride in. Although my health issues can be challenging, I have never let them control me, and I always give 110% to my job. That’s why, in my first week of work at a Walmart Store in Charleston, South Carolina, I told my supervisor about my disabilities and explained what I needed to manage them: occasional breaks to use my nebulizer to…

A Better Balance

We use the power of the law to advance justice for workers caring for themselves and their loved ones. (learn more at abetterbalance.org)

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