Monzo-Bank offers employees paid leave after pregnancy loss | Miscarriage
Online bank Monzo is one of the first UK companies to offer paid leave to employees affected by the loss of a pregnancy.
As part of the Bank for Mental Health’s efforts, the move follows the departure of its founder and former CEO Tom Blomfield, who resigned in January due to his own problems with anxiety and stress.
Monzo’s policy grants each partner up to 10 additional days of paid vacation if they lose a baby due to an abortion, miscarriage, or stillbirth, regardless of when the pregnancy occurs.
“This includes colleagues who are partners or surrogates, as pregnancy loss doesn’t just affect women or heterosexual couples,” the bank said. Extra leave can be approved by supervisors if employees think they need more than two weeks.
Under UK labor law, companies are only required to allow parents to use scheduled maternity or paternity leave if they lose their baby after 24 weeks if it is considered stillbirth.
A previous loss is considered a miscarriage and does not entitle you to maternity leave or maternity benefit. It is then at the employer’s discretion whether to offer compassionate leave, annual leave, or unpaid leave.
In the UK, according to the Miscarriage Association, more than one in five pregnancies ends in a miscarriage, resulting in around 250,000 losses each year. Most occur in the first three months of pregnancy.
Monzo, which was founded in 2015 and employs around 1,600 people, is one of the first UK companies to introduce paid leave in the event of loss of pregnancy. The announcement comes weeks after Channel 4 said it was a world first when it introduced a pregnancy loss policy that includes two weeks of paid vacation.
Monzo’s policy was quietly introduced two months ago and will expand to its handful of U.S. employees over the next six to eight weeks. Activists welcomed the news and hope other companies will follow suit.
“People have long wanted more understanding and appreciation of the effects a miscarriage or loss of pregnancy can have, be it a miscarriage, an ectopic pregnancy, a molar pregnancy or an abortion for any reason,” Ruth Bender Atik, said the national director of the Miscarriage Association.
She said she hopes other companies will adopt similar guidelines and reflect on the hurdles partners must overcome in order to get vacation at all. “The fewer rules and regulations about who qualifies and who doesn’t, the better it will be,” she added.
Monzo hiring manager Tara Mansfield said the bank is also trying to recognize the people who terminate their pregnancies. “People need time to recover,” she said.
The bank offers employees and partners who are undergoing fertility treatment, diagnosis or counseling an additional eight days of paid fertility leave every year. This time can be used to rest after a procedure, to recover from the emotional effects of the treatments or to attend outpatient appointments and examinations.