Steps towards parity in Parental Leave: TotalEnergies
We spoke to TotalEnergies about their Parental Leave policy and how it has positively impacted their employees since the implementation.
"I hope that in time other companies and industries recognise the need for this amount of time for both parents. It is vital for the development of the family and the child." - Jake Henderson-Palmer, Lead Services Manager, TotalEnergies
To improve parity in parental leave as part of a wider strategy to promote equality and diversity within an inclusive business environment.
In 2020, we introduced a gender-neutral family policy which offers 12 weeks’ paid leave to any new parent following the arrival of their child. It represents a step-change from the previous arrangements, which featured two weeks’ paternity leave.
It covers all secondary caregivers – this can be the father in a heterosexual or same-sex couple, or a mother in a same-sex couple but who has not given birth and therefore is not covered by the maternity leave policy. It also covers those welcoming a new addition to their family via adoption and surrogacy.
It’s open to those working onshore and in rotational site-based positions for our UK exploration and production business.
Our reflections at the time of implementation:
A new generation of parents do not see raising children as simply a women’s issue. This policy reflects that change in culture and we believe it will go some way towards making men and women more equal in the workplace, particularly when it comes to recruitment: now all parents can take significant time off to be with their families during this exciting time.
We hope the policy will empower women, perhaps even allowing them to return to work earlier than planned as their partner can now take time off too. This will not only benefit women at TotalEnergies but also those whose partners work for TotalEnergies.
We are committed to creating an inclusive working environment which promotes equality and diversity. It may take time to truly realise the value of policies like this one, but it is an important and progressive step.
By September 2023, more than 40 people had taken up the offer of enhanced parental leave in the first 12 months following the arrival of the new addition to their family.
Jake Henderson-Palmer, Lead Services Manager for TotalEnergies returned from enhanced parental leave in May 2023. He said: “I am genuinely honoured to work for a company that values family as much as TotalEnergies. These 12 weeks have given me time that I will never forget. I hope that in time other companies and industries recognise the need for this amount of time for both parents. It is vital for the development of the family and the child.”