Yorkshire Building Society 16.10.23 (1)

Yorkshire Building Society announces enhancements to family leave policy

Yorkshire Building Society has announced enhancements to its Family Leave Policy to support parents and parents-to-be.

The enhancements, announced during Baby Loss Awareness Week (9-15 October), include paid bereavement leave for two weeks for parents who experience early baby loss (pre-24 weeks).

Currently the law does not have any parental bereavement leave provision if a pregnancy loss is experienced in the first 24 weeks.

The mutual has also updated its IVF leave policy to provide both parents with up to five days leave on full pay when undergoing fertility treatment, to help with medical appointments, balancing work and treatment, and to help lessen the physical and emotional impact of treatment.

The Society has also introduced neonatal leave of up to 12 weeks for both parents, in addition to other family leave entitlements that are available.  This will make paid leave available to parents of babies who need medical care within the first weeks of life, bringing the benefits of the Neonatal Care (Leave and Pay) Act 2023 to colleagues 18 months earlier than when it comes into force in April 2025.

The new policies, which have been driven by internal colleague networks, are part of the Society’s strategy to become an even more inclusive workplace.

Kate Ireland, chief internal audit officer and executive sponsor for diversity, equality and inclusion at Yorkshire Building Society said: “We recognise the significant emotional and physical impact of baby loss. By introducing parental bereavement leave for both parents in the event of early baby loss, we hope to support parents who experience the loss of a pregnancy at any stage.

“At the same time, after consulting with our Parent and Carer’s Network, we have also updated our IVF policy to help families undergoing fertility treatment so they can balance appointments and work life, as well as manage the emotional and physical effects of treatment.

“Our neonatal policy will also help parents whose babies need medical care within the first 28 days of birth, offering up to 12 weeks of paid leave. We are proud to make this available to colleagues 18 months before the Neonatal Care Act comes into force.”

Recently Yorkshire Building Society was named in the top ten of family friendly employers by charity Working Families and has a Parent and Carer’s Network which works across the business, offering support to colleagues who are also parents and carers, driving policy change and bringing expertise.

In addition to the introduction of the new policies, the company held events throughout Baby Loss Awareness week to discuss journeys to parenthood and provide advice for colleagues and people leaders on supporting others going through fertility experiences or baby loss. Colleagues who have experienced baby loss also had the opportunity to share their experiences through a series of articles on the company’s intranet.