You have heard of maternity and paternity leave for parents of newborns. Now, a reputed publishing house has introduced what is being called “pawternity leave” for employees adopting pets. HarperCollins Publishers India has begun to grant its staff paid leave of five working days to allow them time to bond with their new pets, HuffPost India reported.
The practice may be common abroad, but is unheard of in India. “At HarperCollins, we want the very best of work-life balance for our colleagues, and that includes being mindful about their family needs,” HCI Chief Executive Ananth Padmanabhan told HuffPost India. “Pet children need as much attention [as human children], if not more. We don’t want colleagues to worry about the number of leaves they have before deciding to start a family.”
Besides allowing employees time to bond with their pets, the move is also aimed at instilling in employees the responsibility that comes with adoption. As part of the initiative, the publisher is also allowing staff to bring their pets to work, as well. A designated area has been set up for the animals at the company’s Noida office.
“We are always thinking of ways to make HarperCollins the best place to work for, in every respect. In fact, in the UK, we just won an award for diversity in the work place,” said HR chief at HCI, Manjula Sreekumaran.