NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Maternal employment, breastfeeding, and health: Evidence from maternity leave mandates

Michael Baker, Kevin S. Milligan

NBER Working Paper No. 13188
Issued in June 2007
NBER Program(s):   CH   HE   LS

Public health agencies around the world have renewed efforts to increase the incidence and duration of breastfeeding. Maternity leave mandates present an economic policy that could help achieve these goals. We study their efficacy focusing on a significant increase in maternity leave mandates in Canada. We find very large increases in mothers' time away from work post-birth and in the attainment of critical breastfeeding duration thresholds. However, we find little impact on the self-reported indicators of maternal and child health captured in our data.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w13188

Published: Baker, Michael & Milligan, Kevin, 2008. "Maternal employment, breastfeeding, and health: Evidence from maternity leave mandates," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 871-887, July.

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