Amid a growing trend in business, health food company Sweetgreen announced that they would be offering employees becoming new parents 5 months of paid leave yesterday.  The news came in the form of a post from the official Instagram account of the California based, salad-centric restaurant.  According to the release:

At @sweetgreen, mothers, fathers, adoptive parents, foster parents, and others with new additions to their families will now receive 5 months fully paid parental leave. We believe it is our responsibility to lead the way given the U.S. is one of the few countries that does not mandate any paid leave for new parents.

Nobody makes a bigger impact than our team members - it’s their dedication that allows us to live our mission every day: connecting people to real food. Someone once gave us a piece of advice we live by: people don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care. This is the essence of one of our most important core values - make an impact. This move is rare for our industry and we hope this creates a conversation for other companies to join."

According to CBS News, this follows similar announcements from companies like Amazon (20 weeks of paid leave for moms, 6 for dads and adoptive parents) and Reddit (16 weeks of paid leave for moms and dads).  Those numbers are impressive, but Sweetgreens 5 month (20 weeks) offer of paid leave for either parent is by far the heftiest.  On average, working moms return to work within 10 days of giving birth.

I was able to take 3 weeks off when our latest child was born, and it was a blessing.  Luckily, my wife is a stay at home mom for the time being - so that was plenty.  Sure, I would love to stay home with my family - but I would hate to learn that my boss and co-workers found a way to not need me permanently.  That's just my opinion, but I can't imagine that the business world (even the super friendly salad-restaurant business) would stop turning for 5 months so I could spend it at home.

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