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For Slate, A University of Notre Dame Employee Reflects on her Experience with Maternal Leave

In a piece for Slate, Abby Palko contrasts her own experience as a working mother at the University of Notre Dame with that of Justice Amy Coney Barrett.


In October when Amy Coney Barrett was confirmed as a Supreme Court Justice, she was hailed by Republicans as a “conservative feminist.” She demonstrated that women could “have it all”—and then some! A brilliant career, five beautiful children, and a loving, supportive husband.

Abby Palko, currently the Director of the Women’s Center at the University of Virginia, shares her own experience of the University of Notre Dame’s policies on reproductive justice and maternal support.

Her experience there, she says, was very different from Barrett’s.

“This proudly Catholic institution did not make it possible for me to have a family of the size I wanted.”


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