On November 4, Americans all over the country will be voting in yet another important election. My fellow New Yorkers and I have a governor to re-elect or elect. Lots of big races across the country will be closely monitored on Tuesday. I know I will be staying up late that night to check out the latest results. I do hope my daughter will be interested in politics. I think what might help is to develop an interest in some issues and platforms while she matures. One of those issues is certainly Women's Equality. I am a father of a daughter, a husband of a wife, and son of a mother. I sincerely believe it is my duty to support them and other women in the drive to create more equity in terms of work compensation. I know that I want what is best for my daughter. I want her to be validated and respected and not negatively labeled because she is female. I want her to feel safe and secure when she ventures to college. I must remain committed to doing what I can to ensure the highest quality of life for Camilla. Recently, I had the chance to take my daughter to a rally featuring Hillary Clinton, Andrew Cuomo, and Christine Quinn that supported the Women's Equality Party. It was my daughter's first political rally and one featuring Hillary Clinton seemed like a good one to attend.
The Brown Gothamite: How can men be allies in this movement?
Rachael Ellison: The best way for men to be allies is to VOTE and talk about the fact that they are going to vote.
BG: What about the work/life balance which is also a focal point of the WEP?
RE: I think men speaking publicly as you do about your experiences balancing caregiving and work is key. This is a great article on the topic. I'm also writing one. Best points: Take paternity leave and tell people you are taking it, if you have a flex arrangement let your colleagues know that too, and mentor both women and men.
BG: Although my wife and I have discussed this with our daughter, any other advice on how to one might discuss women's equality with a child?
RE: I've been thinking about the same thing. I have talked to my daughter about the concept of voting. We've also talked about how being a member of different groups introduces the ideas of similar common interests and needs. Basically social identity theory, what does it mean to think about something as a member of a family, a student in a class, as a person living in Brooklyn, moms, dads, girls and boys. I talk about how I am working to help moms and dads spend time with their kids and do the work they love that supports their family.
Thanks to Rachael for her time!
So, this Tuesday, I will #VoteWEP for all the women who have made a difference in my life and continue to have an impact. And for my daughter, who is developing the tools to be a difference maker and a woman who could have a positive impact on those around her.
For further reading, here is an essay by Governor Cuomo on the WEP.