WiredCo extends parental leave policies to pets

WiredCo parental leave policies Australian digital and creative marketing agency WiredCo has extended its parental leave policies to include pet owners, IVF and miscarriages.

The agency has introduced five days of paid leave for employees undergoing IVF treatment and two days of leave for their support person. In the event of a miscarriage or stillbirth, employees can take two and four weeks of paid leave respectively. The organisation has also introduced two paid days of fur baby leave, with the option for staff to work from home for up to two weeks when getting a pet.

During their pregnancy, staff will have the option to work from home if they feel unwell and have extra flexibility for appointments. The agency has taken steps to make return-to-work plans customisable to help with role changes, and provide extra support and flexibility. Employees returning to work can also take up to 10 keeping-in-touch days when transitioning back to work.

Employees will also have access to unlimited counselling throughout their parental leave and are entitled to $500 (£262.38) meal vouchers.

Michelle Hampton, managing partner, and Angela Hampton, founder and managing director of WiredCo, said: “While the government’s paid parental leave scheme provides some support, the current cost of living means it’s not nearly enough. The definition of the family unit is so broad now, and so too is the journey people take to become parents, so we wanted to come up with a considered and fully inclusive programme that reflects and respects the now.

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“Just 23% of employers in Australia offer paid leave of between seven and 12 weeks and we made a conscious decision to be part of this group. Our programme doesn’t just look at financial support when our team become parents, it looks at all the other important stuff in the lead up to and afterwards.”

David Kennedy-Cosgrove, partner at WiredCo, added: “We’ve redefined what it means to be a parent to include pets, as Australia has one of the highest rates of pet ownership in the world, with 28.7 million pets now living in 6.9 million households, equating to 69% of households.”