Indiana University has introduced six weeks of paid leave for all employees.

The new program, which takes effect on July 1, 2017, will be available to both mothers and fathers whose child is born or adopted, who have been in non-temporary positions of 30 hours or more per week and have been continuously employed in a benefits-eligible position for at least 12 months before the date of the birth or adoption of a child.

“This major new policy underscores the value Indiana University places on the well-being of its employees, and it is one that will help IU continue to attract and retain outstanding staff employees . . . ,” said Michael McRobbie, president at Indiana University, in a news release.

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Employees will be able to use their leave on an intermittent basis, though it must be completed within six months following the birth or adoption. If both parents are employees, each is entitled to take six weeks of paid leave. And employees are eligible for up to two parental leaves during the course of their career at the university.

Paid parental leave for birth or adoption is already part of the benefits package for full-time faculty.

The policy is designed to build upon the university’s other benefits, such as Care.com, which provides access to emergency childcare services and helps families find childcare providers. The university is also in the process of adding three new classrooms at its campus children’s centre, which will allow the childcare centre to enroll 40 more children by 2018.

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“High-quality childcare is important to our students and our employees,” said Tim Dunnuck, director of the university’s early childhood education services. “Our families generally stay with our program unless they move out of town, so it’s also an important recruitment and retention tool for the university.”

Copyright © 2017 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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