AXA launches its first global policy which covers inclusive parental leave and support

Parent and co-parent will receive 16 weeks and 4 weeks fully paid leave respectively

Policy recognises the changing shape of the modern family 

Policy applies in all the 64 countries where AXA operates

In an initiative that recognises the changing dynamics of family life, and to ensure a diverse and inclusive working environment, AXA is launching its global parenting policy, from 1st January 2017, to support its employees in all of the 64 countries it operates in, including same sex couples, adoptive and single parents. AXA’s intention is to be the preferred employer in the insurance sector.

This progressive policy, based on a commitment to inclusion and engagement, means that AXA will now refer to the primary parent* and co-parent** in acknowledgement of the different types of family structure and the evolving roles and responsibilities of parents. 

The provisions of this policy are: 

The primary parent* will receive 16 weeks fully paid leave with a return to an equivalent role with the same terms and conditions. In the UK this will mean primary parents will receive an additional one week’s paid leave, the co-parent** will get four weeks fully paid leave with a return to an equivalent role with the same terms and conditions.  This is a substantial increase in the one week’s paid paternity leave offered by AXA UK today.  AXA is committed to ensuring that employees’ remuneration is not adversely affected and is in line with our policies during parental leave.  AXA will continue to strongly support flexible working options for both parents, wherever possible, and has a high rate of acceptance of flexible working requests support before, during and after the period of parent leave: links to local childcare, private rooms at work for breastfeeding mothers, extra days’ leave to care for sick children.

Where local laws or current benefits go beyond these provisions, their greater benefit will continue to be applied. In many countries there is no statutory provision for primary or co-parent leave and by giving a consistent minimum level of fully paid leave AXA is recognising that both parents want to contribute to family life, and is supporting them to be able to do so.    Thomas Buberl, Chief Executive Officer of AXA, commented, “At AXA we have a global culture which supports our employees and allows them to have fulfilling professional and personal lives. Our values demand that all our employees are respected and their individual differences are celebrated. This first global policy will give all our employees, wherever they work in the world, the ability to enjoy the most precious time with the new additions to their families secure in the knowledge that AXA will support them.”

Lucinda Charles-Jones, AXA UK Human Resources Director, added. “This policy will enhance and standardise what we offer to employees across the Group and around the world. In the UK the benefits offered, particularly relating to co-parental leave; ensure AXA is one of the leaders in the sector.  We recognise that parental support is an important cornerstone of any employment offer and a significant competitive advantage in attracting and retaining the best talent.” 

*A primary parent is the parent that will take the primary responsibility for welcoming a child into the family. In cases involving the pregnancy of an employee or their partner, the pregnant woman is automatically the primary parent.

** A co-parent is the parent that takes responsibility for welcoming the child into the family but who will not take the primary parent leave. In cases involving the pregnancy of an employee or their partner, the person who is not pregnant is automatically the co-parent.