New paternity leave entitlement only accessible three times

Males working in the public sector will only be allowed to access the new paternity leave entitlement up to three times.

This, according to circular number 2 from the ministry of finance and public service, which outlined the leave provisions for public sector workers effective January 1, 2023.

Paternity leave is a scheduled period of absence from work with pay, to which public sector male employees are now entitled, for the purpose of spending time with, nurturing and caring for a new-born child.

The entitlement allows a period of twenty working days with pay, however, the circular indicates that male employees are entitled to paternity leave on no more than three (3) occasions.

In addition, to be eligible for paternity leave, males must be full-time employees aged eighteen years and above, with at least twelve (12) months of continuous service or part-time male employees with at least twelve (12) months continuous service, working at least eighteen (18) hours per week.

The male will also be required to provide official documentation that he is the registered father of the child.

The ministry notes that paternity leave may still be accessed in the event of stillbirth or if the baby dies within six (6) months after delivery, however, substantiating documentation must be provided.

Multiple births of the same pregnancy, for example, twins or triplets will not increase the number of days that will be granted for paternity leave.

The ministry further stipulates that paternity leave can only be accessed after six months of a previously granted period of paternity leave.

Meanwhile, the terms for the new adoption leave are similar.

Employees are eligible to receive twenty working days with pay, on no more than three (3) occasions.

Adoption leave will be granted after the placement of the child, can only be accessed once in a year, and must be supported by documentation from the Child Protection and Family Services Agency, (CPFSA), or the courts.



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