'War on Moms': Moms getting hurt financially

War on Moms book
War on Moms book

Mom doesn't want flowers for Mother's Day. She wants benefits that women around the world take for granted, according to Sharon Lerner.

Lerner, author of the new book "The War on Moms: On Life in a Family-Unfriendly Nation" (Wiley, $25.95), told WalletPop five of the worst ways American mothers are getting hurt financially.

1. Lack of part-time work options. "Without them, many women get shunted into working too much or not at all," said Lerner, a married mother of 2- and 4-year-old boys. "Sixty percent of women who work full-time would prefer part-time jobs." Because there are no laws forcing employers to curtail schedules for parents, most mothers end up working full-time or staying at home. What little part-time work is available often would not cover childcare costs anyway, the author explained. And some of that work is fraudulent. Among online enterprises promising at-home income, Lerner estimated that for every legitimate offer, there are 57 scams.

2. National policy for paid maternity leave. "We don't have it," Lerner said. Because of that, only 42% of working women can take off 12 weeks or more. Meanwhile, Djibouti, an impoverished, drought-stricken African nation, offers 14 weeks paid, Lerner said.