In an encouraging sign of the times, New Mexico Congressman Steve Pearce has introduced a resolution that we and countless other people who work at home can get behind: a telecommuting Congress. Under the resolution, lawmakers would work in a "virtual Congress," where they would be able to debate, use videoconferencing -- even vote on legislation -- from their districts.
In the wake of Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer nixing the company's work at home policy, this resolution -- from Congress, no less -- is a welcome sigh of relief.
In a time when 80 percent of workers feel that telework is a perk, it makes sense that our own lawmakers follow suit with what is no longer a trend, but the reality of the needs of the American workforce. When we can point to Congressional leaders who are telecommuting, it makes the case that much easier for employees to ask for -- and receive -- a work at home position that makes their work life balance that much easier.
But the benefits don't end there. A telecommuting Congress will also have a greater -- and positive -- impact on the global environment. Currently, lawmakers travel back and forth to Washington on a weekly basis -- leaving behind a staggering carbon footprint. Allowing them to telecommute will save tons in CO2 emissions, as it does for all employees who work from a home office.
Much like many people who favor working at home because it gives them more time with their families, it's a huge plus for members of Congress to stay closer to their state districts. Not only does it create an opportunity for them to spend more time with the people they represent, but it also reduces workplace distractions (i.e. lobbyists) and fosters an environment for greater productivity. And that's true for all telecommuters, who can accomplish more when they are working at home because they can truly concentrate on the work at hand.
We're anxious to see the future of this resolution and hope that it gains momentum in Congress. After all, no matter which side of the floor you sit on, everyone can get behind working at home to create a better work life balance for all.