Parental care advised

NZPA | Sun July 1st, 2018

For everything you wanted to know about parental leave, but were afraid to ask, the Police Association has compiled a guide for mothers and partners.

Parental Leave PackBecoming a parent is one of the most basic and natural aspects of being human, but deciding how to fit that into your working life can be complicated.

And when you’re about to welcome a new member of the family, you want to keep life as calm and happy as possible.

A team at the Police Association, including Detective Sergeant Sally Patrick, who suggested the idea, has put together the Parental Leave Pack (PLP).

It’s a comprehensive guide for mothers and partners on what you need to know throughout a pregnancy or adoption and the parental leave process.

The six-part pack provides a step-by-step guide to the sometimes complex system of your employment rights and entitlements.

It covers each phase of the process, from the moment you find out you are going to become a parent until returning to work from parental leave, with advice and a checklist for each section.

One thing the PLP team was acutely aware of when putting together the pack was that there are always a lot of questions, ranging from “Who should I tell?”, “What happens if I can’t wear my SRBA any more?” and “How much time off can I have?” to “How do flexible employment options work?”, “What about childcare?” and “Can I breastfeed at work?”

The answers can vary depending on your personal situation, so the pack seeks to cover as many options as possible, including some advice that is specific to partners.

Two of the most complex aspects are varying types of parental leave and parental leave payments, including filling out IRD forms. The team reckons that after navigating your way through those, child-rearing will be a breeze.

And don’t forget that if you are a member of the Police Welfare Fund, you will be paid a birth benefit of $50 for one child and $200 for a multiple birth.

There is also a $300 benefit available to help with the legal costs of adoption. In addition, from July 1, if you sign your baby up with the Health Plan, you will receive $200, on condition they stay in the plan for five years.

Photo: LITTLE POPPET CLOTHING (available from The Cop Shop, copshop.nz)

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