Modernizing Federal Leave Policies for Childbirth, Adoption, and Foster Care To Recruit and Retain Talent and Improve Productivity, 3135-3137 [2015-01118]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 13 / Wednesday, January 21, 2015 / Presidential Documents 3135 Presidential Documents Memorandum of January 15, 2015 Modernizing Federal Leave Policies for Childbirth, Adoption, and Foster Care To Recruit and Retain Talent and Improve Productivity Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies Now more than ever, our Nation’s economic success rests on our ability to empower our citizens to choose jobs that best utilize their talents and interests. All employers, including the Federal Government, should support parents to ensure they can both contribute fully in the workplace and also meet the needs of their families. The availability of paid maternity leave, for example, has been shown to increase the likelihood that mothers return to their jobs following the birth of a child, and paid maternity and paternity leave has been shown to improve the health and development outcomes of the infant. In addition, it is critically important for parents and their newborn or newly adopted child to have the opportunity to form strong family attachments and relationships. Men and women both need time to care for their families and should have access to workplace flexibilities that help them succeed at work and at home. Offering family leave and other workplace flexibilities to parents can help achieve the goals of recruiting and retaining talent, lowering costly worker turnover, increasing employee engagement, boosting employee morale, and ensuring a diverse and inclusive workforce. Yet, the United States lags behind almost every other country in ensuring some form of paid parental leave to its Federal workforce; we are the only developed country in the world without it. My memorandum of June 23, 2014 (Enhancing Workplace Flexibilities and Work-Life Programs), directs the heads of executive departments and agencies (agencies) to more fully utilize workplace flexibilities and work-life programs to promote recruitment, retention, employee engagement, and workforce productivity. My Administration fully supports efforts to align the Federal Government with the parental leave policies of leading private sector companies and other industrialized countries, and will continue to take administrative steps to modernize leave policies to better support Federal employees. asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PRESDOCS By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, and to further build on these important goals and the work currently underway by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and other agencies to review existing personnel policies, I hereby direct as follows: Section 1. Advanced Sick and Annual Leave. (a) Agencies shall ensure that, to the extent permitted by law, their policies offer 240 hours of advanced sick leave, at the request of an employee and in appropriate circumstances, in connection with the birth or adoption of a child or for other sick leave eligible uses. This benefit shall be provided for purposes specified in law and regulation irrespective of existing leave balances. Within 60 days of OPM issuing its guidance pursuant to section 3 of this memorandum, agencies shall make any necessary changes to their policies to implement this section. (b) Agencies shall ensure that their policies offer the maximum amount of advanced annual leave permitted by law, at the request of an employee, for foster care placement in their home or bonding with a healthy newborn or newly adopted child. This benefit shall be provided for purposes specified VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:47 Jan 20, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\21JAO0.SGM 21JAO0 3136 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 13 / Wednesday, January 21, 2015 / Presidential Documents in law and regulation irrespective of existing leave balances. Within 60 days of OPM issuing its guidance pursuant to section 3 of this memorandum, agencies shall make any necessary changes to their policies to implement this section. Sec. 2. Emergency Backup Dependent Care. Agencies shall consider, consistent with existing resources, providing access to affordable emergency backup dependent care services such as through an Employee Assistance Program. Sec. 3. Update Leave Policies. (a) In coordination with the agency review and related OPM summary report of workplace flexibilities and work-life policies required by sections 4 and 5 of my memorandum of June 23, 2014, agencies shall make necessary changes to their policies and practices to ensure that employees experiencing the birth or adoption of a child, foster care placement in their home, or who have other circumstances eligible for sick or annual leave are aware of the full range of benefits to which they are entitled. These changes shall also ensure that discretionary flexibilities are used to the maximum extent practicable, in accordance with the laws and regulations governing these programs and consistent with mission needs, and that employees understand the benefits for which they may qualify. Any necessary changes to agency policies required by this section shall be made as soon as possible, and no later than January 1, 2016. (b) For purposes of the changes required by subsection (a) of this section, agencies shall review policies with respect to the following required benefits: (i) use of accrued sick leave (including period of incapacitation for birth mother, care of birth mother during period of incapacitation, doctor appointments for birth parents or newborn child, or any periods of time during which adoptive parents are ordered or required by an adoption agency or by a court to take time off from work to care for the adopted child); (ii) leave pursuant to the Family and Medical Leave Act (including intermittent leave for childbirth, adoption, or foster care placement in the home; and leave without pay or substitution of appropriate paid leave in accordance with law and regulation); (iii) use of accrued annual leave; (iv) use of leave without pay for a longer period than what is provided for under the Family and Medical Leave Act; and (v) break times and private space for nursing mothers. (c) For purposes of the changes required by subsection (a) of this section, agencies shall ensure those changes provide to the maximum extent practicable the following discretionary benefits: (i) advancement of sick or annual leave, consistent with the requirements set forth in section 1 of this memorandum; (ii) donated annual leave under the Voluntary Leave Transfer Program; (iii) donated annual leave under the Voluntary Leave Bank Program; (iv) emergency backup dependent care services, such as through an Employee Assistance Program; asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PRESDOCS (v) telework; and (vi) flexible work schedules, including part-time schedules and job sharing arrangements. (d) Within 90 days of the date of this memorandum, OPM shall issue guidance to agencies regarding implementing advanced sick and annual leave policies, including their application to part-time employees. The OPM summary report of workplace flexibilities and work-life policies required by section 4 of my memorandum of June 23, 2014, shall provide further guidance to implement this memorandum. Sec. 4. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this memorandum shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:47 Jan 20, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\21JAO0.SGM 21JAO0 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 13 / Wednesday, January 21, 2015 / Presidential Documents 3137 (i) the authority granted by law to a department or agency, or the head thereof; or (ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals. (b) This memorandum shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations. (c) This memorandum is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person. (d) The Director of OPM is hereby authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register. THE WHITE HOUSE, Washington, January 15, 2015 [FR Doc. 2015–01118 Filed 1–20–15; 11:15 am] VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:47 Jan 20, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4790 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\21JAO0.SGM 21JAO0 OB#1.EPS</GPH> asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with PRESDOCS Billing code 6325–01

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 13 (Wednesday, January 21, 2015)]
[Presidential Documents]
[Pages 3135-3137]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-01118]




                        Presidential Documents 



Federal Register / Vol. 80 , No. 13 / Wednesday, January 21, 2015 / 
Presidential Documents

[[Page 3135]]


                Memorandum of January 15, 2015

                
Modernizing Federal Leave Policies for 
                Childbirth, Adoption, and Foster Care To Recruit and 
                Retain Talent and Improve Productivity

                Memorandum for the Heads of Executive Departments and 
                Agencies

                Now more than ever, our Nation's economic success rests 
                on our ability to empower our citizens to choose jobs 
                that best utilize their talents and interests. All 
                employers, including the Federal Government, should 
                support parents to ensure they can both contribute 
                fully in the workplace and also meet the needs of their 
                families. The availability of paid maternity leave, for 
                example, has been shown to increase the likelihood that 
                mothers return to their jobs following the birth of a 
                child, and paid maternity and paternity leave has been 
                shown to improve the health and development outcomes of 
                the infant. In addition, it is critically important for 
                parents and their newborn or newly adopted child to 
                have the opportunity to form strong family attachments 
                and relationships.

                Men and women both need time to care for their families 
                and should have access to workplace flexibilities that 
                help them succeed at work and at home. Offering family 
                leave and other workplace flexibilities to parents can 
                help achieve the goals of recruiting and retaining 
                talent, lowering costly worker turnover, increasing 
                employee engagement, boosting employee morale, and 
                ensuring a diverse and inclusive workforce. Yet, the 
                United States lags behind almost every other country in 
                ensuring some form of paid parental leave to its 
                Federal workforce; we are the only developed country in 
                the world without it.

                My memorandum of June 23, 2014 (Enhancing Workplace 
                Flexibilities and Work-Life Programs), directs the 
                heads of executive departments and agencies (agencies) 
                to more fully utilize workplace flexibilities and work-
                life programs to promote recruitment, retention, 
                employee engagement, and workforce productivity. My 
                Administration fully supports efforts to align the 
                Federal Government with the parental leave policies of 
                leading private sector companies and other 
                industrialized countries, and will continue to take 
                administrative steps to modernize leave policies to 
                better support Federal employees.

                By the authority vested in me as President by the 
                Constitution and the laws of the United States of 
                America, and to further build on these important goals 
                and the work currently underway by the Office of 
                Personnel Management (OPM) and other agencies to review 
                existing personnel policies, I hereby direct as 
                follows:

                Section 1. Advanced Sick and Annual Leave. (a) Agencies 
                shall ensure that, to the extent permitted by law, 
                their policies offer 240 hours of advanced sick leave, 
                at the request of an employee and in appropriate 
                circumstances, in connection with the birth or adoption 
                of a child or for other sick leave eligible uses. This 
                benefit shall be provided for purposes specified in law 
                and regulation irrespective of existing leave balances. 
                Within 60 days of OPM issuing its guidance pursuant to 
                section 3 of this memorandum, agencies shall make any 
                necessary changes to their policies to implement this 
                section.

                    (b) Agencies shall ensure that their policies offer 
                the maximum amount of advanced annual leave permitted 
                by law, at the request of an employee, for foster care 
                placement in their home or bonding with a healthy 
                newborn or newly adopted child. This benefit shall be 
                provided for purposes specified

[[Page 3136]]

                in law and regulation irrespective of existing leave 
                balances. Within 60 days of OPM issuing its guidance 
                pursuant to section 3 of this memorandum, agencies 
                shall make any necessary changes to their policies to 
                implement this section.

                Sec. 2. Emergency Backup Dependent Care. Agencies shall 
                consider, consistent with existing resources, providing 
                access to affordable emergency backup dependent care 
                services such as through an Employee Assistance 
                Program.

                Sec. 3. Update Leave Policies. (a) In coordination with 
                the agency review and related OPM summary report of 
                workplace flexibilities and work-life policies required 
                by sections 4 and 5 of my memorandum of June 23, 2014, 
                agencies shall make necessary changes to their policies 
                and practices to ensure that employees experiencing the 
                birth or adoption of a child, foster care placement in 
                their home, or who have other circumstances eligible 
                for sick or annual leave are aware of the full range of 
                benefits to which they are entitled. These changes 
                shall also ensure that discretionary flexibilities are 
                used to the maximum extent practicable, in accordance 
                with the laws and regulations governing these programs 
                and consistent with mission needs, and that employees 
                understand the benefits for which they may qualify. Any 
                necessary changes to agency policies required by this 
                section shall be made as soon as possible, and no later 
                than January 1, 2016.

                    (b) For purposes of the changes required by 
                subsection (a) of this section, agencies shall review 
                policies with respect to the following required 
                benefits:

(i) use of accrued sick leave (including period of incapacitation for birth 
mother, care of birth mother during period of incapacitation, doctor 
appointments for birth parents or newborn child, or any periods of time 
during which adoptive parents are ordered or required by an adoption agency 
or by a court to take time off from work to care for the adopted child);

(ii) leave pursuant to the Family and Medical Leave Act (including 
intermittent leave for childbirth, adoption, or foster care placement in 
the home; and leave without pay or substitution of appropriate paid leave 
in accordance with law and regulation);

(iii) use of accrued annual leave;

(iv) use of leave without pay for a longer period than what is provided for 
under the Family and Medical Leave Act; and

(v) break times and private space for nursing mothers.

                    (c) For purposes of the changes required by 
                subsection (a) of this section, agencies shall ensure 
                those changes provide to the maximum extent practicable 
                the following discretionary benefits:

(i) advancement of sick or annual leave, consistent with the requirements 
set forth in section 1 of this memorandum;

(ii) donated annual leave under the Voluntary Leave Transfer Program;

(iii) donated annual leave under the Voluntary Leave Bank Program;

(iv) emergency backup dependent care services, such as through an Employee 
Assistance Program;

(v) telework; and

(vi) flexible work schedules, including part-time schedules and job sharing 
arrangements.

                    (d) Within 90 days of the date of this memorandum, 
                OPM shall issue guidance to agencies regarding 
                implementing advanced sick and annual leave policies, 
                including their application to part-time employees. The 
                OPM summary report of workplace flexibilities and work-
                life policies required by section 4 of my memorandum of 
                June 23, 2014, shall provide further guidance to 
                implement this memorandum.

                Sec. 4. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this 
                memorandum shall be construed to impair or otherwise 
                affect:

[[Page 3137]]

(i) the authority granted by law to a department or agency, or the head 
thereof; or

(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget 
relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

                    (b) This memorandum shall be implemented consistent 
                with applicable law and subject to the availability of 
                appropriations.
                    (c) This memorandum is not intended to, and does 
                not, create any right or benefit, substantive or 
                procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any 
                party against the United States, its departments, 
                agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or 
                agents, or any other person.
                    (d) The Director of OPM is hereby authorized and 
                directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal 
                Register.
                
                
                    (Presidential Sig.)

                THE WHITE HOUSE,

                    Washington, January 15, 2015

[FR Doc. 2015-01118
Filed 1-20-15; 11:15 am]
Billing code 6325-01