Lightfoot announces 12 weeks of paid parental leave for city employees

CHICAGO — Beginning Jan. 1, 2023, all city employees will receive up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave, regardless of whether they are the birthing or non-bearing parent, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced Friday.

The city mayor, along with the Department of Human Resources, agreed with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees to expand the city’s paid parental leave policy.

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Employees will receive 100% of their pay up to the full 12 weeks if they have worked for the city for at least 12 months prior to the furlough. The employee must also have worked at least 1,250 hours in the 12 months immediately preceding the holiday.

Lightfoot said the policy, which had not been revised since 2011 and only allowed for up to six weeks of furlough, was under re-examination due to the impact of the coronavirus.

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“The pandemic has taught us many important lessons, two of which are that families need help now more than ever and unpaid care work is hurting our job market,” Lightfoot said. “Ensuring parents have time to bond with their new child, become healthy from birth, and receive their wages will have a lasting positive impact on our employees and the city. I challenge my peers in the private sector to join me in offering this critical benefit that undeniably leads to greater equity within our workforce.”

The policy applies to new parents through birth, adoption, foster care or surrogacy. Lightfoot announces 12 weeks of paid parental leave for city employees

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