B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains (Black Press files)

Longer unpaid leave offered for B.C. parents

Extensions for death of child, caring for dying relative

The B.C. government is moving to allow longer leaves for parents coping with the death or abduction of a child.

Labour Minister Harry Bains introduced amendments Monday to the Employment Standards Act. They also extend unpaid leave for workers caring for a dying family member, allow pregnancy leave to begin earlier and permit parental leave to be taken for a longer period.

“These amendments are being made to ensure that British Columbians can take advantage of changes to the federal Employment Insurance and compassion care maternity parental benefits with the assurance of job protection,” Bains told the legislature.

The two new unpaid leave provisions are 104 weeks for the death of a child and up to 52 weeks for the crime-related disappearance of a child.

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