A reader just emailed with this query: When applying for jobs, should one mention maternity leaves? Should one’s references? This is a question that comes up often enough that I think it really merits some discussion. On the one hand, there’s plenty of evidence that mothers’ CVs are judged especially harshly (and this is about mothers, not parents: fathers’ CVs do especially well). But on the other hand, there are sometimes delays or gaps to explain. How can one weigh up the costs and benefits? Is there some way of mentioning motherhood that doesn’t trigger the negative biases?