Roughly a month after welcoming her first child with Orlando Bloom into the world, Katy Perry debunked a "popular misconception" about maternity leave. In a series of tweets urging her followers to advocate for paid family leave, the singer shared that, contrary to what some might think, being a mom is a full-time job and maternity leave is most certainly not a vacation.
"Popular misconception: being a mom isn’t a full time job," Perry tweeted on Sept. 24. "When a mom finally goes back to work (whatever profession they do) it's not like they been coming from months of 'time off'... she's coming from a full time job... of being a mom."
In a follow-up tweet, Perry urged her followers to call their own moms and tell them how much they love and appreciate them. "And advocate for paid family leave," the new mom added.
While the Family and Medical Leave Act provides certain employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave a year, the United States is one of the few countries in the world to not offer any sort of national paid leave. According to NPR, the United States joins New Guinea, Suriname, and a few South Pacific island nations as the only countries within the United Nations' 193 members to not have a paid parental or family leave law. What's more, the United States is the only high-income country without a paid leave policy.
Although there have been some legislative wins regarding paid leave in the United States, there's still work to be done before all workers have access to paid family leave. In 2019, for example, Forbes reported Congress had tucked a provision granting federal employees 12 weeks of paid parental leave to care for a new child into the budget of the the National Defense Authorization Act. The law does not, however, extend to those who work outside the federal sector.
And to say there's a serious need for a paid family leave policy would be an understatement. According to the Pew Research Center, nearly half of all families with two parents present have reported that both parents work full-time. What's more, Pew's research shows the number of moms working full or part-time outside the home has grown from 51% to 72% over the course of the last half century.
Since becoming a mom in August, Perry has been nothing but candid about her journey into motherhood. Just days after giving birth to daughter Daisy Dove Bloom, the Smile singer rocked a nursing bra, postpartum underwear, and hair and makeup by "exhaustion" for the 2020 MTV Video Music Awards
Despite the additional workload a child brings, Perry was quick to reassure her followers that she's loving her new gig as a mom. "I love my job," the singer tweeted.