Vodacom Group introduces gender-neutral leave policy

Vodacom is the first telco in South Africa to introduce such a leave policy.

Vodacom this week announced the introduction of a gender-neutral leave policy whereby all its employees, regardless of their gender and sexual orientation, will be offered 16 weeks (four months) of fully paid parental leave. 

This means that any employee whose partner is having a baby, adopts a child or becomes a parent through surrogacy will have the flexibility to take up to 16 weeks paid leave at any time during the first 18 months.

The announcement from Vodacom comes shortly after the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) announced a similar policy. 

Also read: HR leaders tip their hats to JSE’s groundbreaking parental leave policy

Vodacom’s new leave policy is designed to support families by giving every parent the opportunity to have more time with children new to their family. Under the new leave policy, employees will also be able to phase their return from parental leave by working the equivalent of a 30 hour week at full pay for a further two months.

“As a company with strong local roots, diversity and inclusion are core to our beliefs and purpose at Vodacom. We are proud to support all families by giving every parent the opportunity to have more time with their children, without worrying about the impact on their finances or careers,” says Vodacom Group CHRO Matimba Mbungela. “A The new parental leave policy further underlines our strong commitment to diversity and gender equality and will make a significant difference to thousands of Vodacom employees, particularly in markets where there is little or no legal requirement to give equal support for both parents.”