As we look forward to Mother's Day this coming weekend, we want to recognize the moms and moms-to-be that make Firehouse all that it is. And we want to welcome Ashley Shadowens back to work after the birth of her daughter, Olivia.
Early last year, Firehouse took an important step toward ensuring our moms (and dads) get to spend that important time with their new arrivals. We introduced a parental leave policy that dramatically improved benefits for our team. It only distinguishes between birth mothers and non-birth parents. Birth mothers get 16 total weeks. This includes 12 weeks fully paid, plus two transition weeks on either side of the birth during which they are obligated to work half-time to receive full pay. Non-birth parents - whether the husband of a wife giving birth, an adopting parent, or half of a same-sex couple having a child via surrogacy - get 10 total weeks, six weeks of fully paid leave with four half-time weeks.
Ashley shares, "Having a baby has rocked my world in so many ways, and I am very thankful to have had my maternity leave to spend time with my daughter and acclimate to our new normal. It gave our family tremendous peace of mind in addition to that valuable time."
With more paths toward parenting than ever before, we wanted to craft a policy inclusive of all our employees, whoever they are and however their new child enters their lives. For those bearing the additional (and often exorbitant) cost of adoption, we also included financial assistance to offset some of those costs.
Erica Baker, a waiting adoptive mom, had this to say, "It means the world to me (and my husband) to know that Firehouse supports us on our journey to parenthood, regardless of what it looks like. It's been so special having my Firehouse family walk alongside us as we grow the Baker family."
Happy Mother’s Day to all of our mothers and mothers-to-be!