Today is National Working Daughters Day

Today, November 21, is National Working Daughters Day.

Three years ago, we decided to declare the third Tuesday in November, which is National Family Caregivers Month, as National Working Daughters Day (NWDD). Working Daughter didn’t have a marketing budget to create a day of recognition, but we did have an army of working daughters in our growing community, and with their help, we raised awareness on social media and celebrated the first NWDD together on Zoom.

Why National Working Daughters Day? Because there are more than 30 million people balancing the unpaid work of caring for someone over the age of 18 while also working a paying job, and the majority of them are women. I was one of those women, caring for 4 family members, while trying to stay employed, across a 7-year span.

 As someone who experienced the stress and burnout of caregiving, I know that days of recognition don’t alleviate the day-to-day challenges caregivers face. But as someone who has worked in marketing her entire career, I also know that awareness leads to conversation and conversation can lead to change.

So, we persisted. In 2021 and 2022 we had many different organizations join us on NWDD as sponsors, gifting our members, hosting appreciation events for employees, and continuing to spread the word on social media. And this year, we are not only thrilled to be recognized as an official day by Days of the Year, we are honored to receive a proclamation from Maura Healy, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. This recognition puts Working Daughters Day in front of millions of people, aiding in our mission to make care and career compatible.

Massachusetts Proclamation

This is the change we need to see.

Why?

Because working daughters are arguably at the highest risk for leaving the workforce. They frequently report that they need to switch to a less demanding job, take time off, or quit work altogether in order to make time for their caregiving duties. As a result, they suffer loss of wages and risk losing job-related benefits such as health insurance, retirement savings, and Social Security benefits.

Because women are more likely to live in poverty than men. And they are expected to live longer on average. And who is going to fund their long term care?

Because as a recent New York Times article pointed out, “The health care system for the elderly is neglected, broken and inadequate to meet any demands, even the basic needs.” So, who fills that gap? Daughters. And sons, and nieces and nephews. And they can’t exist on the unpaid work of care; they need to earn a living.

Because as another recent New York Times article points out, “Millions of families are facing such daunting life choices — and potential financial ruin — as the escalating costs of in-home care, assisted-living facilities and nursing homes devour the savings and incomes of older Americans and their relatives.” They need paychecks.

Because family caregivers make great employees!

Supporting working caregivers at work isn’t costly or difficult. Here are the top 5 benefits working daughters request:

1.    Flexibility

2.    Paid Leave

3.    Financial assistance

4.    Caregiving resources

5.    Workplace support groups

This kind of support is totally possible.

So today, the fourth National Working Daughters Day, the first “official” one), and a great day to be from Massachusetts, ask yourself:

How can you support a family caregiver today?

Let’s work together to make that happen.

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