What you need to know:
- The leave also extends to male employees whose spouses lose a pregnancy.
- The brewer’s guidelines outline various types of pregnancy loss and the resources available to staff and line managers.
East African Breweries Limited (EABL) will give its female employees who lose their pregnancies up to six and half months paid leave to grieve, a move that sets a new bar for other companies in the country.
The policy aligns with that of its parent company, Diageo, which first introduced the pregnancy loss leave in September last year for its UK and Ireland markets.
The leave also extends to male employees whose spouses lose a pregnancy. EABL says it has classified pregnancy loss as bereavement and is giving female employees or spouses up to 10 working days of paid leave if the pregnancy loss occurs before 20 weeks.
“We recognise that experiencing pregnancy loss is a grieving process that requires patience and time,” says EABL which had 1,408 employees by the end of June.
“When pregnancy loss occurs after 20 weeks, the carrying female can access up to 26 weeks while the spouse can access up to 10 working days of paid leave.”
The brewer’s guidelines outline various types of pregnancy loss and the resources available to staff and line managers.
The Nairobi Securities Exchange-listed firm in July 2019 also rolled out generous maternity and paternity leaves.
EABL offers female employees a minimum of 26 weeks of fully paid maternity leave while male employees get a minimum of four weeks paternity leave. This was introduced to give workers enough time to take care of their young families.
Kenyan law allows a fully paid three-month maternity leave and a two-week paternity break for fathers. Many companies, however, frown upon these breaks, viewing them as an additional labour cost that sometimes forces them to hire temporary workers.
EABL already offers flexible working hours to breastfeeding mothers and has also set up nursing rooms for them, matching the practice in several other top corporates such as Safaricom.
The pregnancy loss guidelines were created alongside Diageo’s Spirited Women’s Network resource group as well as a suite of employees support that include guidelines focused on gender identity and expression, menopause and domestic and family abuse guidelines.
EABL is currently considering introducing an expanded compassionate leave that will extend to covering employees who lose close friends, just as its parent company.
Diageo employees who experience the loss of a child, spouse, partner or parent have access to up to 10 working days of paid bereavement leave.
Employees also have access to up to five days for the loss of another family member and one day for a close friend or non-family member.