City of Greensboro Employees Begin Taking Advantage of Parental Leave Policy
GREENSBORO—American Express made headlines earlier this week when company leaders announced they're expanding their paid parental leave policy for both mothers and fathers.
Earlier this year, one Triad city enacted a similar policy, becoming the first in the state.
Carlos Castellanos works for the City of Greensboro as a producer at its television network.
He's excited about the arrival of his second child very soon and being able to take advantage of the city's new paid parental leave policy.
"Having a child is exhausting, and it's very hard work,” Castellanos said. “Just having that time and that peace of mind that my job is fine, and that I'm at home being able to take care of my child is a great feeling."
"Effective Sept. 1, 2016, we now offer paid parental leave for all of our employees who are benefit eligible,” said City of Greensboro Benefits Supervisor Deborah Stephens. “The benefit is a six-week program of 100 percent paid leave."
The reality is that most U.S. workers don't get any paid family leave.
According the Bureau of Labor, only 12 percent of people working in our country have access to paid leave through their jobs.
Greensboro made history this year after passing its policy.
"The City of Greensboro was the first public employer to offer paid parental leave in the state,” Stephens said. “It's important to really establish a work/life balance for our employees."
The city's policy applies to both moms and dads with newborns, along with several other groups.
"Including a child that you may have adopted or a child that may have been placed with you for foster care,” Stephens said.
It’s time for parents to enjoy those first precious moments of a little one's life, without additional stress.
"I'm just grateful the city has decided to do this,” Castellanos said. “Having those first few weeks, they're really important."
In October, Durham County was the second government agency in the state to enact a paid parental leave policy, with eligible employees receiving 12 weeks.
Originally published online at Time Warner Cable News on January 3, 2017. Full story.