Microsoft grants its Kenyan male staff six-week paternity leave

The global computer software giant in a statement said the new leave policy would apply across its sub-Saharan Africa offices.

Microsoft on Tuesday announced that male employees will benefit from six-week paternity leave, three times the legally set timeframe of two weeks.

“We regard our staff as the lifeblood of our brand, and we place the highest priority on supporting them in all the many aspects of their lives, both inside and outside the workplace,” said Microsoft general manager for West, East, and Central Africa Amr Kamel.

Female employees were not forgotten either and now  would get five-month maternity leave to bond with their newborn babies, two months above the minimum Kenyan legal allowance of three months.

“Microsoft takes great pride in its position as one of the leading employers in the Africa region, and we are delighted to inform our employees of the new benefits, which take effect with immediate effect.”  Kamel added.

Microsoft’s Nairobi regional office has about 70 workers and comprises of Kenya, East Africa and sub-Saharan Africa teams.

Microsoft has also introduced a family caregiver leave benefit of four weeks to its employers with any of its immediate family member with a serious health condition.

“Microsoft understands that family is the most important thing there is. We remain committed to driving a culture of diversity and inclusivity across our company, providing leave benefits to mothers, fathers and caregivers is just one of the ways we honour that commitment,” he said.

The firm previously allowed a fully paid, three-month maternity leave and a two-week break to fathers in line with the Kenyan law.

The change comes two years after Microsoft introduced 20-week paid leave to new mothers and 12-week paid time off for non-birth parents in the US.

The tech firm now joins global giants like Netflix, Google, Facebook, Amazon and Nestle that have revised the number of maternity and paternity leave upwards over the past three years.

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