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Channel 4 Launches 'World's First' Pregnancy Loss Paid Leave For Male And Female Workers

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Channel 4 Launches 'World's First' Pregnancy Loss Paid Leave For Male And Female Workers

Channel 4 has announced a progressive new pregnancy loss policy, which allows two weeks paid leave and support for those who may be grieving.

The policy, which has been hailed as a "world first", is inclusive of all genders to mourn the loss of their unborn child, and can apply to a direct employee, their partner or their surrogate.

In a post released on LinkedIn, the team at Channel 4 explained the policy "also recognises pregnancy loss as an experience not isolated to women or heterosexual couples."

Channel 4 announced the new policy on LinkedIn (Credit: Channel 4)
Channel 4 announced the new policy on LinkedIn (Credit: Channel 4)
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"C4 consulted several leading charities on the policy which includes: two weeks leave on full-pay; paid leave for medical appointments; flexible working; an array of resources including medical support, counselling, and a buddying scheme to support employees returning to work after a loss," the statement reads.

"The policy - believed to be the world's first - will support both women and men who have been affected - whether it happens directly to them, their partner or their baby's surrogate mother, regardless of the nature of their loss, and whatever their length of service.

"The policy has also been devised for line managers and colleagues of staff directly affected who wish to provide appropriate practical and emotional support to those affected."

Channel 4's Chief Executive, Alex Mahon, added: "At Channel 4 we recognise that the loss of a pregnancy, no matter the circumstances, can be a form of grief that can have a lasting emotional and physical impact on the lives of many women and their partners.

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Alex Mahon wants to provide Channel 4 staff with more pregnancy support (Credit: PA Images)
Alex Mahon wants to provide Channel 4 staff with more pregnancy support (Credit: PA Images)

"Our dedicated policy by 4Women will help confront a subject that remains taboo while providing Channel 4's employees with vital tools and support.

"We hope that by giving away this pioneering policy we're able to encourage other organisations to do the same."

Statistics from the NHS show that around one in eight pregnancies will result in miscarriage, while one in three women are thought to have an abortion throughout their lifetimes.

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Elsewhere, 0.3 per cent of all pregnancies will result in stillbirth.

The policy is inclusive of all genders (Credit: Unsplash)
The policy is inclusive of all genders (Credit: Unsplash)

The announcement from Channel 4 has prompted advertising firm Saatchi & Saatchi to announce a new initiative to support working parents.

The brand will now invest £350,000 into a childcare fund to help relieve employees' childcare pressures. Part of this money includes funding fully paid leave for parents experiencing miscarriage at any stage of pregnancy, as well as support for partners and close family members.

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Currently in the UK, neither you or your partner are entitled to any leave if you were to have a stillbirth or miscarriage. You are permitted to take sick leave, as long as your GP signs you off. It should not count towards your total sick leave as it is marked as a pregnancy-related illness.

While New Zealand was widely praised for recently passing a bill allowing three days bereavement leave after a miscarriage or stillbirth, India was the first country in the world to implement the policy.

In 1961, the country passed a bill permitting up to six weeks bereavement leave after pregnancy loss.

Featured Image Credit: PA Images

Topics: Pregnancy, UK News, Life News, Life, Channel 4, Pregnant

Kimberley Bond
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