Purdue Today

September 30, 2008

Paid parental leave policy to go into effect Wednesday

The Purdue University board of trustees on Friday (Sept. 26) approved a proposal to add a paid parental leave benefit for employees.

The new paid parental leave policy allows both male and female faculty, staff and graduate staff to take paid time off for a birth or adoption, effective Oct. 1.

"Flexibility and family-friendly policies are becoming more essential as the work force continues to change," Purdue President France A. Córdova said. "Adopting policies such as paid parental leave will be critical for Purdue if it is to continue on its path to preeminence and our goal of balancing the demands of work life and family life. This also will help Purdue be competitive in the hiring of the brightest and the best faculty and staff."

The policy provides up to six weeks paid leave for the birth mother and up to three weeks for the father of the child, the same-sex domestic partner of the birth mother, the same-sex domestic partner of the birth father, an adoptive mother or father, or the same-sex domestic partner of an adoptive mother or father. Taking parental leave does not reduce the employee’s balance of any other paid leave.

To be eligible for paid parental leave, employees must have been employed at the University for at least one continuous year at half-time or more in a benefits-eligible position. The policy applies to those giving birth and/or adopting children on or after Oct. 1.

If both parents are eligible, they may choose to combine the total of their leave and allocate the total between them. The maximum paid parental leave for one employee is six weeks.

Leave pays 100 percent of the employee’s straight-time, regular pay, based on full-time equivalency. The time may not be used for eldercare, to care for a sick child, or to attend child-related activities such as parent-teacher conferences or sporting events.

The cost of the benefit will be distributed and managed within existing departmental budgets.

"Creating this benefit will help to enrich the quality of life on campus, which is an integral part of our new strategic plan," said Morgan R. Olsen, executive vice president and treasurer. "The paid parental leave policy will give parents additional flexibility and time to bond with their new child, adjust to their new family situation and balance their professional obligations."

To take parental leave

An employee who wishes to use the parental leave benefit must give a 30-day notice before taking the leave, if the leave dates are foreseeable. The 30-day notice is not required for people otherwise qualifying for the leave during October 2008.

If employees wish to initiate use of paid parental leave at this time, they should see their Business Office or their area HR Office.

Employees may direct questions to Pat D. Russell, ADA/Leaves/CDL Program Consultant, at prussell@purdue.edu or 49-40269 or to erofficer@purdue.edu.