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Family-friendly program allows some Nevada state employees to bring their babies to work

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Pro-life and pro-family advocates are celebrating a new program at the Nevada State Treasurer's Office that will allow employees to bring their babies to work with them.

Nevada State Treasurer Zach Conine first announced the Infant to Work program about a month ago, arguing that the policy will benefit new parents and the workforce as a whole. "It’s no secret that Nevada is facing a high number of vacancies for State positions," Conine said at the time. "Through this new pilot program, the Treasurer’s Office will do its best to support new and expectant parents, while also creating an environment that supports working families."

To participate in the program, interested employees at the treasurer's office must alert their supervisor, who will then coordinate with the employee to make the necessary accommodations for parent and infant safety. New moms and dads can then continue to bring their babies to work until the child reaches six months of age.

Though Infant to Work is a new program for state treasury employees, the initiative actually began with the state's Division of Child and Family Services and then expanded to five other divisions of the state's Department of Health and Human Services — with promising results. More than 170 employees have participated in the program since it first began.

Itzel Fausto, who works for the state treasury, expressed her appreciation for the added time she spent with her daughter, Diamond. "It is a blessing to bring your infant to work," Fausto said. "I get emotional talking about it because it feels like not everyone gets a chance to do that. So being able to bond with your baby longer instead of having to take her to daycare is just amazing."

Fausto's experience is exactly what the departments were hoping for when they decided to enact the new policy. According to a state website designed to help Nevada businesses "become healthier places to work," programs like Infant to Work encourage employees to take shorter child-related leave; attract better employees and increase retention rates; minimize child care costs; promote parent/child bonding, especially through breastfeeding; and improve overall morale.

Such programs are especially important for Nevada women, Live Action claimed, because the state does not offer paid maternity leave. Instead, women utilize sick leave, short-term disability, and some unpaid-leave required under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act.

However, Nevada fathers are also enjoying the program as well. "Seeing my daughter's face every day made every day worthwhile," said Theron Huntamer. "She brightened the day of everyone in the workplace. Looking back, I can’t imagine not having this time with her. This program is an amazing incentive, while forging a bond that lasts a lifetime."

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