The Parents of Babies Born Premature or Sick Policy will ensure that parents whose babies require neo-natal care will receive extra paid leave in addition to maternity and paternity leave and pay.
Sinead Carville, Chief Administrative Officer at FinTrU, said: “Ensuring that we provide a supportive workplace environment for all our employees is central to FinTrU’s way of thinking. Our compassion for our employees doesn’t start and finish in the workplace, and this policy serves as a reassurance for new parents at FinTrU that they will have our support should they need it during challenging times.”
Sinead added “With Northern Ireland currently without a government and important issues such as this affecting our employees, it is important to embrace the power of industry to lead change. We are in a fortunate position to be able to do this and hopefully this policy will also encourage more industry leaders to consider their future policies too.”
Currently, 1 in 13 babies in the UK are born premature with 1,900 babies born prematurely in Northern Ireland every year. FinTrU’s new policy will give access to six weeks additional maternity leave while partners can avail of two weeks additional and flexible paternity leave.
The approach to the new policy was created in collaboration with Tiny Life – the Northern Ireland premature and vulnerable baby charity dedicated to reducing premature birth, illness, disability and death.
Alison McNulty, CEO at TinyLife, said “TinyLife has been involved for many years in the campaign currently being debated at Westminster on the Neonatal Care (Leave and Pay) Bill which provides additional paid leave to parents when their child is in a neonatal unit.
“We are delighted to work with FinTrU who, rather than waiting on legislation to be passed, have spearheaded this initiative which recognises and supports their employees at a time of crisis and stress. As a business, FinTrU is putting staff needs at the heart of the company and we would call on other business leaders to follow their example.”
FinTrU contacted Tiny Life through its relationship with Diversity Mark. With their experience of supporting families in Northern Ireland from the moment baby arrives and beyond, they have provided invaluable insight to help form this policy.
Nuala Murphy, Director of Diversity Mark, said “At Diversity Mark we offer accreditation, support and guidance for all organisations navigating the diversity and inclusion landscape. However, as shown by FinTrU and TinyLife, collaboration and peer support are a substantial part of the network we have built.
“We welcome working alongside progressive and compassionate employers who understand that going beyond the current legal requirements can have a long lasting and far-reaching impact.”