New parental leave changes for staff
We're excited to announce substantial changes to our parental leave policy which reflect our commitment to diversity and inclusion and continues to place the highest value on the wellbeing of our people and their families.
Our People and Culture team has undertaken an extensive review of the colleges’ parental leave policy with a view to improve flexibility, recognise the critical importance of shared care, and move to a gender-neutral policy offering equitable parental leave for all parents.
The changes were supported by the ANZCA Council, and place ANZCA as a leader in this area, not only among medical colleges and not for profit organisations, but many other much larger commercial entities. They aim to:
- Provide greater opportunity for our staff to access paid parental leave to foster equal division of care and improve family work-life balance.
- Proactively address reducing the gender pay gap present during the unpaid portion of parental leave.
The revised parental leave policy will apply to both Australia and New Zealand subject to the specific laws of each country.
Below is a summary of the changes:
- Parental leave has been removed from the broad “Leave Policy” and created as a standalone “Parental Leave Policy" to recognise its importance.
- The definitions of “primary” and “secondary” carer have been removed meaning employees no longer have to be the primary carer to access paid parental leave.
- Introducing the option of spreading the 12 weeks of ANZCA parental leave pay over 26 weeks at half pay.
- Continue to pay the Superannuation Guarantee Charge (SGC) and KiwiSaver during any unpaid portion of the parental leave to ensure no employee is disadvantaged from a superannuation contributions perspective.
Under superannuation laws in both Australia and New Zealand, employers aren't required to make superannuation contributions for employees who are on unpaid parental leave. Continuing to pay the SGC and KiwiSaver during this time will maintain consistent and fair superannuation contributions for all staff, removing the bias on employees being out of the workforce for new born caring responsibilities. The loss of superannuation contributions during unpaid parental leave has contributed to the current gender pay gap in Australia as it usually impacts one gender disproportionately. With this change to the policy, we're pleased to be taking proactive action to start to reduce the gender pay gap.
We're pleased to make the above changes to continue to support our employees and their families during an exciting time in their lives.