Ford Becomes Auto Industry Leader in Paid Family Leave
Ford Motor Company is now the automotive industry’s leader in paid family leave. According to Fortune, Ford is offering salaried employees eight weeks of paid leave following the birth of a child, four times more than the previous max leave. What’s more, this is available to mothers, fathers, and adoptive parents, making Ford a leader both in maternal and paternal leave.
“What was really important to us was that the leave provision applied to both men and women,” Ford chief human resources officer Kiersten Robinson told Fortune. “The pattern that we saw was that women were taking advantage of the previous policy, but not many men were taking it. That set a tone to some of our female employees that maybe it’s not okay. We wanted to make sure that everyone felt as though this was a priority and they had the flexibility to take this time with their new family.”
Ford is offering birth mothers between six and eight weeks of disability leave with full compensation, maxing out at 16 total weeks. When a new parent comes back to the workplace, Ford is offering the option to start back part-time at full-time pay for one month to allow an easier readjustment.
There are also new benefits for foster parents: Ford will allow employees up to two weeks of paid leave when a new foster child joins their household. This leave offer will only be available to an employee twice during their time with the company.
Sick leave is also undergoing changes. Where salaried employees were previously offered 10 days with up to five days available for personal reasons, all 10 days will now be unrestricted.
Benefits are currently not being offered to hourly workers, but Julie Lavender, Ford’s director of personnel relations and employee policies, tells Fortune that this could become a key bargaining chip the next time Ford enters into negotiations with the United Automobile Workers union.
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News Source: Fortune
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