Past Events

Supporting Working Parents: Family-Friendly Business Policies

More than two-thirds of American workers still lack access to paid leave, leaving many families with the difficult choice of paying their bills or caring for a new baby or sick family member. Lack of paid leave also strains the already overstretched childcare system as families need care soon after birth and often can’t stay home with sick children. This virtual panel discussion on Open Classroom examined why paid leave is critical to create thriving families, a strong childcare system, and successful businesses, and how companies of all sizes can respond.

Featured speakers:

  • Ellicia Lanier, Executive Director, Urban Sprouts Child Development Center and Clark-Fox Policy Institute Scholar-in-Residence
  • Lakesha Robinson, Senior Advisor on Children, Youth, & Families, City of St. Louis Mayor’s Office
  • MacKenzie Grayson, Interim Executive Director, Gateway Early Childhood Alliance
  • M’Evie Mead, Director of Strategic Partnerships, Missouri Jobs with Justice
  • Merdith Linhardt, Vice President, HR Compliance and Employee Relations, Centene Corporation
  • Stephanie Andersen, Manager, Clark-Fox Policy Institute and Panel Moderator


Watch the recording of the live virtual panel discussion.


Read the recap of the paid leave panel published by Student Life, the WashU student newspaper.

Download the new policy brief, Paid Leave: Good for Families, Businesses, and the Economy.

View additional resources shared by our panelists: