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Unilever starts offering 20-day paternity leave, same-sex partner benefits in Phl

Unilever will now offer a 20-day paid leave for fathers, healthcare benefits for same-sex partners and paid absences for adoptive parents.

As an attempt to ramp up its responses to a diverse workforce, Unilever will now offer a 20-day paid leave for fathers, healthcare benefits for same-sex partners and paid absences for adoptive parents.

According to Unilever Philippines chairman and CEO Benjie Yap, “diversity is an essential requirement in the today’s workforce, as it lends to new ideas, energies, and solutions.”

And so, “in acknowledging the different forms of unions and families, the company continues to explore ways and solutions to lead by example in the industry.”

With this development, employees can now avail of 20 days paid paternity leave, longer than the seven days mandated by law.

Same-sex partners of employees can be enrolled as healthcare beneficiaries. They are also eligible for maternity and paternity leaves.

Meanwhile, adoptive parents can avail of paid leaves when adopting a child six months old or younger. But the company did not specify the maximum allowed paid absences.

The company is actually already recognized as pro-LGBTQI particularly in the US. It received a perfect score of 100% on the 2017 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a national benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBT workplace equality, administered by the well-moneyed NGO Human Rights Campaign Foundation.

But the company has also been accused of putting profit before the human rights of LGBTQIA people – e.g. Unilever North Africa Middle East has production facilities in countries such as Tunisia and Algeria, where – according to a 2015 report by the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association – homosexual activity continues to be illegal.

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