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Facebook is introducing four-month parental leave for all employees, regardless of gender.

Days after CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that he would be taking two months of leave following the birth of his first child, Facebook committed itself to the longer period of four months. The extension will mostly affect new fathers and people in same-sex relationships, as the four month option was previously open to a proportion of female employees and senior-level executives.

Paternity leave has become a more pressing issue in corporate culture – Spotify have topped Facebook by offering staff up to six months’ parental leave with 100% pay, to recognise the importance of a “healthy work-family balance.” As Lawyers will be aware, the current legal requirements on UK companies is that parents in the UK can have up to 50 weeks shared leave, but only 39 will be paid.

Spotify in particular claim that this is based on their Swedish-founded and inspired culture. HSPS applicants should consider how we have a generic concept of Swedish culture as egalitarian and tolerant, and whether this is codified in their laws as well.

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