New Guide Assists Employers in Creating Family Friendly Workplaces that Support Children’s Healthy Development

A new NCECF guide for employers aims to create more family-friendly workplaces across North Carolina to help employers attract and retain talent and to improve health and well-being for children—the state’s future workforce.

As part of our Family Forward NC initiative, the Guide to Family Forward Workplaces provides tools for employers of all sizes with practical tips for selecting and implementing 16 family-friendly workplace practices such as flexible scheduling, accommodations for pregnant workers, and paid parental leave. To help create the guide, NCECF worked with an advisory council of prominent business leaders, community leaders and health experts and gathered input from more than 1,000 employers throughout the state.

Half of North Carolina employers had difficulty hiring in 2018, up 10 percent from 2016, according to the NC Works Commission. A record-low 3.6 percent unemployment rate and an ongoing skills gap have created a tight labor market across the state, which means employers must work harder to attract and retain top talent.

Research shows that children’s earliest years are so defining to their brain architecture that by the time a child turns eight, his or her third-grade reading outcomes can predict future academic achievement and career success. Decades of research show that children need health and development on track from birth, supportive and supported families and communities, and high-quality birth-through-age eight learning environments with regular attendance to build strong brains.

Initiatives like Family Forward NC that support employer efforts are essential to improving the overall health and well-being of North Carolinians, said Dr. Betsey Tilson, State Health Director and Chief Medical Officer for the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

“To improve the health of North Carolina, we need to partner across sectors and in innovative ways,” Tilson said. “Supporting our business community as they adopt policies that promote health, while increasing their competitiveness, is one of those innovative strategies.”

Download our press release.

Listen to the Public News Story about the Guide.

A big thanks to our founding sponsor Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina for investing in this initiative.

Want More? Join our Family Forward NC Summit on April 1

At the Family Forward NC Summit, featuring Brigid Schulte – we will explore how to achieve family friendly workplaces by supporting and inspiring employers across the state to increase access to research-based, family-friendly practices—big and small—that improve workplace productivity, recruitment and retention; grow a strong economy; and support children’s healthy development.

The Family Forward NC Summit is for employers and business and community leaders who want to attract and retain top talent, support child health and well-being, help close the skills gap and support future workforce development. Participants will leave with the knowledge and tools to start or continue conversation and action about benefits within their own organization.

Keynote speaker Brigid Schulte is the director of New America’s Better Life Lab, a nonpartisan initiative to create a culture that enables people to combine work and life in meaningful ways in order for individuals and families to thrive.  

Learn about the Summit.

Family Forward NC from Big Dog Little Bed Productions on Vimeo.