The "Right" Length of Paid Parental Leave
Though there is no one answer to what is the "right" amount of paid leave to offer new parents, consider what the International Labour Organization and American Academy of Pediatrics have stated on the topic.
The International Labour Organization
Paid Maternity Leave
The ILO recommends a minimum of 14 weeks, with at least 18 weeks when possible, given the positive health outcomes for mothers and children, and the economic benefits for women.
Paid Paternity Leave
The ILO has no specific recommendation, but notes that paternity leave should be offered and men incentivized to take it, citing the positive impact on child development, as well as the importance of gender equality "at the heart of decent work."
American Academy of Pediatrics
Statements by AAP President, Dr. Benard Dreyer
AAP President, Dr. Benard Dreyer, suggests 6-9 months minimum maternity leave, noting that at least 12 weeks of paid maternity leave has a significant health impact for infants (increasing the frequency of checkups and immunizations).
Policy Statement for Pediatric Residents
The AAP recommends pediatric residents have 6-8 weeks paid parental leave regardless of gender or whether a parent through birth, adoption, or foster care.