69% of employers offer equal parental leave

equal parental leaveEmployee Benefits poll: Almost seven in 10 (69%) employers provide staff with equal parental leave, allowing them to take the same amount of paid or unpaid leave when a new child arrives, including in adoption and surrogacy cases.

One-fifth (21%) of respondents to an online survey conducted by Employee Benefits earlier this month said that said they do not offer equal parental leave at all, while just 10% were considering implementing it.

Several weeks ago, insurance provider Aviva published data which highlighted that 80% of fathers working for the firm have taken at least five months of paternity leave.

The analysis also found that equal parental leave had been taken by more than 2,500 of its employees, with almost half (1,227) being men. A total of 268 parents have taken equal parental leave more than once, including 131 men taking it twice, while 79% of men have taken more than five months for subsequent children.

Danny Harmer, chief people officer at Aviva, explained that the business makes this benefit available to all members of staff, and that there is no requirement for parents to share the parental leave between them.

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He said: “Equal parental leave is now an important part of our culture at Aviva as a family-friendly employer. While organisations must keep challenging themselves to do more to build a workplace that is inclusive for everyone, to have equality at work, achieving equality in society and at home is critical.”