Citigroup Inc. is increasing its time-off allowance for new parents in their U.S. sector up to 24 weeks, according to a June report from Bloomberg.

Under its new policy, employees at Citigroup’s U.S. and Puerto Rico sectors will all receive a minimum of 16 weeks paid leave, including for those parents who adopted children or had children through surrogacy. Birth parents will also receive an additional eight weeks off in some cases, all of which will be paid. (TAKE A POLL: Do You Agree That Small Businesses Are the Backbone of Our Economy and Need More Support?)

Despite this seemingly like a huge win for Citi employees, the 24 weeks paid leave is actually far lower than many other countries. For example, Citigroup’s British employees are entitled to 26 weeks leave at base pay, as well as additional time at lowered or unpaid status, Bloomberg noted.

Importance of Maternity Leave

Recent studies have shown that maternity leave can have a direct impact on a baby’s nutrition and health. “Breastfeeding provides numerous health benefits for a newborn baby, including optimal nutrition, improved immunity, and a reduced risk of certain conditions like respiratory infections, asthma, and obesity. And birth parents experience numerous benefits as well, including a lower risk of postpartum depression,” CBS News wrote in a 2023 analysis.

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) stipulates that all public agencies, all public and private elementary and secondary schools, and companies with 50 or more employees must provide an eligible employee with up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave each year for the birth and care of a child. Unfortunately this also includes work off due to pregnancy complications, which many employers count against the 12 weeks. (TAKE A POLL: Should the Government Implement Universal Background Checks For All Firearm Purchases?)

What Do You Think?

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