Stuff co.nz 30 November 2017Family First Comment: It is currently being proposed that the 26 weeks of paid parental leave (due to be fully delivered in 2020 – why not immediately?) is shared between both parents. We believe mothers should receive their full entitlement to paid parental leave, and dads should be given a separate entitlement. By sharing the entitlement between parents, it means that mothers have to compromise valuable bonding time with their baby, and the policy is inconsistent with the Ministry of Health guidelines for 6 months of breastfeeding.OPINION: As any parent will tell you, the period immediately following the birth of a child is one of the most demanding and difficult times for families. Mums are battling sleep deprivation, recovering from childbirth, breastfeeding, and coping with the existing demands of siblings.Paid parental leave values mothers and parenting in general. There is growing evidence of profound beneficial neurobiological effects a mother’s physical presence has on her young child that cannot be achieved by anyone else, especially during the pregnancy and the crucial first three years – referred to as the “1,000 days”, starting from time of conception.Mothers have been undervalued, and New Zealand is undergoing a timely and long overdue re-evaluation of motherhood.Early childhood education is receiving $1.7b taxpayer funding every year, and yet our investment in hands-on parenting in these early crucial formative years has nowhere near the same investment. It’s time that changed so that parents can make a real choice. In reality, this policy would represent about 0.2 per cent of the total government spending.But it is also completely appropriately, and in fact desirable, that the father is involved in this crucial period of adjustment and to support the mother. This will promote hands-on parenting by fathers, which is a good thing.Research is now showing us that it is important that fathers be actively involved with their children and are not an optional extra. Fathers are fundamental to children’s healthy development as their involvement can improve the health, emotional well-being and educational achievement of their children. Even from birth, children who have an involved father are more likely to be emotionally secure, be confident to explore their surroundings, and, as they grow older, have better social connections with peers. These children are also less likely to get in trouble at home, school, or in the neighbourhood.That’s why Family First made the first call for paid father leave of up to four weeks when the extension of paid parental leave was first debated in 2015. According to the latest OECD report, on average, OECD countries offer nine weeks of paid father-specific leave.It is currently being proposed that the 26 weeks of paid parental leave (due to be fully delivered in 2020 – why not immediately?) is shared between both parents. We believe mothers should receive their full entitlement to paid parental leave, and dads should be given a separate entitlement. By sharing the entitlement between parents, it means that mothers have to compromise valuable bonding time with their baby, and the policy is inconsistent with the Ministry of Health guidelines for 6 months of breastfeeding.Having children is a season of change and challenge for both the mum and the dad. As a society, we should do everything we can to enable and support new and young parents. It’s an investment that will yield great returns.Bob McCoskrie is the National Director for Family First NZhttps://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/opinion/99391492/bob-mccoskrie-twentysix-weeks-paid-parental-leave-should-just-be-for-mothers
After a dominant performance between the pipes for the No. 2 USC women’s water polo team over the weekend, junior goalie Victória Chamorro was named MPSF Player of the Week for the first time in her career.The Rio de Janeiro, Brazil native was locked in on defense down in La Jolla, Calif. at the Triton Invitational, recording 19 saves in just two games. Her standout performance in the championship match against No. 5 Arizona State included 12 saves, which helped USC (14-0) secure its fourth consecutive Triton Invitational crown.In Saturday’s game against No. 17 San Diego State, Chamorro stopped seven shots in just three periods of work and allowed only two goals to lead USC to a 17-4 victory over the Aztecs.USC came away unscathed in pool play, and after a win in the semifinals of the tournament against No. 6 Michigan, Chamorro would once again man the cage for USC against MPSF rival Arizona State. After giving up one goal early in the first frame, she silenced the Sun Devils in the second and fourth periods and allowed just one more goal en route to the 12-2 win in the title match. Chamorro’s strength and quickness bothered Arizona State the entire evening, as she tallied a couple of key steals and finished with 12 stops in goal. In total, she allowed just four goals over the weekend.The 2016 Rio Olympian leads USC with a 2.48 goals allowed per game average, only letting 13 goals get past her so far this season. In 21 total periods of work, she has recorded 55 saves for a 10.48 saves per game average and leads a stingy USC defense that allows just 3.36 goals per game, compared to the team’s 18.5 goals per game scoring average.The junior is also ranked No. 6 all-time in the USC record books for career saves. In her freshman season, her 207 saves were the most ever recorded by a first-year goalie at USC and the ninth most in program history. For her efforts in 2015, Chamorro was named to the MPSF All-Newcomer Team and earned All-American Honorable Mention status.As a sophomore last season, she helped USC capture the program’s fifth national championship with a 6.7 saves per game average.Chamorro and the Trojans will now head down to Irvine, Calif., to take part in the 2017 UCI Invitational. Action begins on Feb. 24 and will conclude Feb. 26 at the Anteater Aquatics Center.
IBF Lightweight Champion Richard Commey has confirmed the inclusion of renowned American boxing manager Keith Connolly to his management team.This comes a few hours after the Ghanaian denied reports suggesting the said appointment.The 31 year old took to his official twitter handle to confirm the news, with Connolly set to work alongside Commey’s longtime manager Michael Amoo-Bediako. Connolly also manages Daniel Jacobs, Adam Kownacki, Sergey Derevyanchenko and Marcus Brown.Commey was slated to fight unified champion Vasyl Lomachenko in April before suffering a hand injury in his title clinching bout against Russian Isa Chaniev back in February.