President Obama is directing federal agencies to offer their employees 240 hours of advanced sick leave at the request of an employee and under appropriate circumstances. This leave would be for the birth or adoption of a child or for other eligible uses of sick leave.
The White House memo states that leave policies should be updated as soon as possible and no later than January 1, 2016.
The memo directs the Office of Personnel Management to issue guidance regarding the new leave policies within 90 days from today and publish the memo in the Federal Register.
The memo was given the subject ” Modernizing Federal Leave Policies for Childbirth, Adoption, and Foster Care to Recruit and Retain Talent and Improve Productivity”.
The benefits of offering more leave to employees are cited as the reason for the change:
“The availability of paid maternity leave, for example, has been shown to increase the likelihood that mothers return to their jobs following the birth of a child, and paid maternity and paternity leave has been shown to improve the health and development outcomes of the infant. In addition, it is critically important for parents and their newborn or newly adopted child to have the opportunity to form strong family attachments and relationships.
“Men and women both need time to care for their families and should have access to workplace flexibilities that help them succeed at work and at home. Offering family leave and other workplace flexibilities to parents can help achieve the goals of recruiting and retaining talent, lowering costly worker turnover, increasing employee engagement, boosting employee morale, and ensuring a diverse and inclusive workforce. Yet, the United States lags behind almost every other country in ensuring some form of paid parental leave to its Federal workforce; we are the only developed country in the world without it.”
What do you think of the new expanded family leave policy? Tell us in the comments.