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The Link between National Paid Leave Policy and Work–Family Conflict among Married Working Parents

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Abstract

We investigated relationships between four dimensions of work–family conflict (time- and strain-based work interference with family, time- and strain-based family interference with work) and three key national paid leave policies (paid parental leave, paid sick leave, paid annual leave) among a sample of 643 working married parents with children under the age of 5 across 12 industrialised nations. Results provided some evidence that paid sick leave has a small but significant negative relationship with work–family conflict. Little evidence was revealed of a link between paid parental leave or of a link between paid annual leave and work–family conflict. Family-supportive organisational perceptions and family-supportive supervision were tested as moderators with some evidence to suggest that paid leave policies are most beneficial when employees' perceptions of support are higher than when they are lower. Family-supportive organisational perceptions and family-supportive supervision were both associated with less work–family conflict, providing evidence of their potential benefit across national contexts.

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