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Yahoo Rethinks Its Maternity Leave Policy


When it came time for her maternity leave, Marissa Mayer famously made do with only a few weeks, but Yahoo’s new maternity (and paternity!) leave policy suggests that she won’t require the same spartan parental leave from other new parents at the struggling company.

Per The Wall Street Journal, Yahoo recently announced that it would extend paid leave to 16 weeks for new mothers and offer eight weeks of paid leave for new fathers. In addition, new parents will get perks like a $500 allowance to spend on childcare, laundry, or food, and a bunch of Yahoo-branded baby gear. (Similar, the Journal points out, to the Yahoo-emblazoned pet stuff the company gives out to new pet owners.)

Extending parental leave is a smart move, coming as it does a few months after Yahoo’s announcement that all employees would be required to work in the office, not from home as many had been doing. Although a few media outlets dubbed it a good idea from the perspective of improving productivity at a troubled organization, others pointed out that the decision to cancel telecommuting could read like the company telling its employees that their work-life balance doesn’t matter.

Regardless, the new policy isn’t a patch on Google’s maternity leave plan, which offers a whopping five months to new moms. Still, in a time when many companies don’t offer any paid leave for new parents, it’s definitely a step in the right direction.

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Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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