Speaking at the United Nations on the occasion of International Women’s Day in 2017, actor Anne Hathaway stressed the need for equality, which also includes giving parental leave to share responsibilities. “Maternity leave, or any workplace policy based on gender, can — at this moment in history — only ever be a gilded cage.
Though it was created to make life easier for women, we now know it creates a perception of women as being inconvenient to the workplace. We now know it chains men to an emotionally limited path. And it cannot serve the reality of a world in which there is more than one type of family. Because in the modern world, some families have two daddies. How exactly does maternity leave serve them?” she asked.
“Today, on International Women’s Day, I would like to thank all those who went before in creating our current policies—let us honour them and build upon what they started by shifting our language- and therefore our consciousness — away from gender and towards opportunity. Let us honour our own parents’ sacrifice by creating a path for a fairer, farther-reaching truth to define all our lives, especially the lives of our children,” she continued.
She further said, “Bringing about change cannot just be the responsibility of those who need it most; we must have the support of those at the highest levels of power if we are ever to achieve parity.”