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They’re Fresno’s family-friendly businesses. Does your boss offer flexible work hours?

Yammilette Rodriguez accepted the First 5 Fresno County child friendly business award for her employer, Youth Leadership Institute. Rodriguez brought her daughter, Lizette Rodriguez, 6, to the ceremony on May 31, 2017.
Yammilette Rodriguez accepted the First 5 Fresno County child friendly business award for her employer, Youth Leadership Institute. Rodriguez brought her daughter, Lizette Rodriguez, 6, to the ceremony on May 31, 2017. banderson@fresnobee.com

Working 9-to-5 can be tough when you’re a parent 24-7.

It’s tough balancing job responsibilities and family duties, especially for young parents who have babies, toddlers and young children.

But some employers make it easier for parents by offering child-friendly benefits such as flexible work hours, extended family leave, on-site family movie nights and more.

On Wednesday, First 5 Fresno County honored five businesses with work environments that accommodate working parents.

Yammilette Rodriguez had her daughter by her side to accept the 2017 First Five Fresno County Child-Friendly Business Award for her employer, Youth Leadership Institute.

First 5 Fresno County gave Youth Leadership Institute a child-friendly award on May 31, 2017. Yammilette Rodriguez accepted the award for the company.

Rodriguez often has Lizette Rodriguez, 6, with her. Youth Leadership Institute supports parents if there is a need to bring children to the office for a few hours. Rodriguez brings her daughter to work in the morning and takes her to a kindergarten class in the afternoon.

Youth Leadership Institute, a youth engagement organization, has other child- and family-friendly benefits: Nineteen holidays, including from Christmas to New Year’s Day; gradual re-entry after family leave with reduced hours or other accommodations; an opportunity to work at home or remotely, and flexible work hours. Rodriguez said she’s incredibly grateful for the family-friendly work environment. “They have taken care of us.”

It’s nice, I can bond and still get work done.

Chrissy Barnes, employee at BRS Financial Group

At BRS Financial Group, an employee benefits company, Chrissy Barnes said she takes advantage of a private room dedicated for breast feeding mothers. The company also has allowed her husband to bring son, Sawyer Barnes, to the office so she can feed the baby. “It’s nice, I can bond and still get work done.”

At Realty Concepts, a new building includes a private breast-feeding room with a leather recliner and a flat screen television, and a large playroom and patio for children. In accepting the child-friendly award, Realtor Lisa Fazio-Satterberg said the business has movie nights for families.

Wells Fargo gives employees 16 paid Community Service hours annually that can be used to volunteer at their child’s school or sporting events. And the bank offers 16 weeks of paid parental leave (paid maternity leave in California is six weeks). And Wells Fargo offers up to four weeks leave to a parent who is not the primary caregiver for a new child following birth or adoption.

Zack Evans, owner of Evans Energy, accepted the child-friendly award for his company with his son, Levi Evans, 2, in tow. Evans is known for getting upset at employees who don’t take time to attend school functions and other events for their children.

First 5 has been giving child-friendly awards for 12 years. “We know investing in employees is good for business, good for families and good for our entire community,” said Emilia Reyes, First 5 Fresno County executive director. “Child-friendly businesses employ committed workers, build loyalty, have greater recruitment and increase their bottom line.”

Barbara Anderson: 559-441-6310, @beehealthwriter

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