"Unfinished Business" of the women's movement in workplace
In 2012, Anne-Marie Slaughter sparked a national conversation about inequality in the workplace and work-family balance with her cover story in The Atlantic "Why Women Still Can't Have It All." Slaughter had recently left her high-powered job as the director of planning at the State Department under Hillary Clinton for an academic career to devote more time to her family.
Three years later, Slaughter expands on her essay in a new book, "Unfinished Business: Women Men Work Family," and says women still do not "have it all." But this time, she says it is not just a women's issue.
"We need to focus less on women and more on elevating the value of care and changing roles and choices open to men," she said on "CBS This Morning" Friday.
Slaughter puts the blame on an uncompromising work culture that lags behind the times.
"We used to have a workplace where it was men in the workplace and women at home, and now you have 60 percent of American women in the workplace and lots of men feeling tremendous tension between work and family," she said. "But the workplace doesn't make room for care."
To further address her point, Slaughter pointed to the disconnect between the millennial generation and the traditional workplace. She said that millennial men, who initially do not believe in traditional gender roles -- most of whom were raised by working mothers -- find that they are forced into them.
"They don't get paternity leave or flexibility, and when they take it their masculinity is questioned, much less their commitment to their careers," Slaughter said.
Calling the current workplace a "toxic world" in a New York Times op-ed ahead of her book release, Slaughter wrote that while women do not "choose to leave their jobs, they are shut out by the refusal of their bosses to make it possible for them to fit their family life and work life together."
Slaughter said in order to tackle this problem, businesses must recognize that maintaining a workplace culture that does not provide room for care will ultimately feed to a major turnover of talented workers.
She also said it was important to adjust the dialogue around work-life balance to eliminate gender-unequal terms.
"We should get rid of 'stay-at-home moms' and 'stay-at-home dads,'" Slaughter said. "You should talk about lead parents ... the one who could be there when the kids need you, whether you're a man or a woman."
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