Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

City Hall Considers Paid Maternity Leave

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The Mayor said giving employees time off for maternity makes sense, and brings City Hall into the 21st century.

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Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Wednesday it's time to "move into the 21st century" when it comes to maternity leave for Chicago workers.

More than 10,000 females who work for the city are currently forced to use sick days, vacation days and unpaid family leave in order to take time off during and after a pregnancy.  Emanuel is considering giving those workers paid time off.

"I think it's time for Chicago, as it relates to its employment policy, to come into the 21st Century," said Emanuel during a rooftop press event at City Hall. "That is the right policy, both for the employer and the employee.  And I can say this as father, but also as the son of a pediatrician, it's also the right policy for the children.  And I think it's a win-win.

In a July 1 memo to Human Resources Commissioner Soo Choi, Emanuel's chief of staff wrote that the maternity leave policy must be reviewed.  A report is expected by mid-August.

Several aldermen told the paper they are glad to hear the new mayor is considering changes.

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