London-based market research business Ipsos has introduced paid leave for employees who have had a pregnancy loss or are undergoing fertility treatment, regardless of their length of service.
Any employee going through pregnancy loss will be given up to four weeks of paid leave and paid time off to allow them to attend any related medical appointments. This is also applicable if the partners or surrogate of an employee experiences a loss.
The policy, which was announced on Tuesday, will also allow staff having fertility treatment to have 16 days off in a 12-month period, with partners and individuals supporting those going through treatment will be eligible for two days of paid leave.
Furthermore, Ipsos, which employs 2,000 UK workers, will offer flexible working, reasonable adjustments including extending blended-working arrangements, temporarily changing or reducing working hours, phased return-to-work plans, occupational health assessments, and access to quiet or first aid rooms.
According to the business, it will provide managers with access to information and guidance to help individuals experiencing pregnancy loss or fertility treatment. Employees will also have access to support provisions, such as guidance on talking to line managers, a wellness action plan, mental health first aiders, financial coaching, employee assistance helplines, signposts to external resources and flexibility in how they use any time off.
Additionally, Ipsos has signed the Miscarriage Association’s pregnancy loss pledge, which it consulted when drawing up the policy.
Claire Timmins, HR director at Ipsos, said: “We have always supported our people, but we hope this policy breaks the associated taboos, while also raising awareness and understanding of the impact of pregnancy loss. Thereby creating an environment where those affected feel safe and supported in talking about their loss and their needs.”