Diageo unveils global parental leave overhaul

23rd May, 2019 by Melita Kiely

Leading spirits producer Diageo has started a global rollout of a new parental leave policy, offering several regional businesses a minimum of 26 weeks paid in full to both parents.

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Pictured: Diageo UK employee James Ashall shared his experience of paternity leave in a short video released earlier this year

The Johnnie Walker owner is offering all female employees in all markets at least 26 weeks of fully paid maternity leave, and has pledged to offer at least four weeks’ fully paid paternity leave worldwide.

In North America, Thailand, Philippines, Singapore, Spain, Netherlands, Ireland, Italy, Russia, Colombia, Venezuela and Australia, among others, Diageo will move to offer fathers 26 weeks paid in full.

The global initiative comes after Diageo UK announced 52 weeks of parental leave for all UK employees, with the first 26 weeks paid in full and both parents retaining benefits and bonuses.

The UK policy is available to all employees regardless of gender, sexual orientation, or whether they become parents biologically, via surrogacy or adoption.

Mairéad Nayager, chief HR officer at Diageo, said: “We are committed to creating a fully inclusive and diverse workforce and we strongly believe that businesses play a significant role in shaping the future of society.

“Global businesses like Diageo must make bold moves on policies and the environments in which their employees work to ensure that the progress people deserve happens.”

The new parental leave policy will be effective in the majority of countries from 1 July 2019, with further markets joining the policy later this year.

Country-specific details will be released in due course as they are subject to local legal, board and regulatory requirements.

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