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Pregnancy and Parental Leave (OPS)

Contents

Introduction

Eligibility

Regular (permanent) employees with less than 13 weeks of service

Regular (permanent) employees with more than 13 weeks of service

Fixed-term (contract) employees

Pregnancy leave

Parental leave

If you took pregnancy leave

If you did not take pregnancy leave

Shortening your parental leave

Extending your parental leave

Returning to work

Credits, benefits, and pension contributions during pregnancy and parental leaves

If you are a regular (permanent) employee with less than 13 weeks’ service

If you are a regular (permanent) employee with more than 13 weeks’ service

If you are a temporary, fixed-term, or contract employee and opted into the benefits plan

If you have questions or need assistance


Introduction

Congratulations!

The arrival of a new loved one is an exciting time but isn’t without its stress. That’s why AMAPCEO has negotiated enhancements to pregnancy and parental leave, including job security and salary top-ups for most permanent employees. These are defined in Article 24 of your Collective Agreement.

The ability to collectively negotiate the terms and conditions of your employment, including these enhancements, is an important advantage of being a unionized professional.

In fact, the labour movement has a long history of winning fairer benefits for parents and advocating that they be extended to all workers, unionized or not.


Eligibility

All employees are eligible for pregnancy and parental leave.

Regular (permanent) employees with less than 13 weeks of service

Regular (permanent) employees with more than 13 weeks of service

Fixed-term (contract) employees

  • Your leave will be unpaid, though you may receive Employment Insurance (EI) benefits.
  • You should not resign your position to start a pregnancy or parental leave. Instead, you should seek a pregnancy and/or parental leave from your position.
  • If your contract is longer than your leave, you can return to your position after your leave.
  • If your contract expires while you are on leave, the expiry date of your contract will become your layoff date. This is important because your two-year access to internal postings is counted from this date.
  • If you have questions or need assistance, please contact an AMAPCEO Workplace Representative.

Pregnancy leave

If you are pregnant, you have the right to take pregnancy leave for up to 17 weeks. Your leave cannot start earlier than 17 weeks before the due date and no later than the day the child is born.

If you are eligible (see above), you will receive a “top-up” of your salary during your leave. The top-up consists of:

  • week 1 (while waiting for EI benefits): 93% of your salary;
  • week 2: your EI maternity benefit payment plus 93% of your salary; and
  • weeks 3–17: your EI maternity benefit payment plus a salary top-up that together totals 93% of your salary.

To receive the top-up, you must submit proof to your supervisor or another Employer representative that you are in receipt of EI maternity benefits.


Parental leave

You have a right to take parental leave if you become:

  • a birth parent,
  • an adoptive parent, or
  • a person who is in a relationship of some permanence with a parent of a child and intend to treat the child as your own.

If you took pregnancy leave

You are eligible for up to 61 weeks of parental leave. Your leave must start immediately after your pregnancy leave.

If you are eligible (see above), you will receive a “top-up” of your salary for up to 15 weeks of your leave. The top-up consists of:

  • weeks 1–15: your EI parental benefit payment plus a salary top-up that together totals 93% of your salary; and
  • weeks 16–61: your EI parental benefit payment and no top-up.

To receive the top-up, you must submit proof to your supervisor or another Employer representative that you are in receipt of EI parental benefits. It does not matter if you are receiving standard or extended parental benefits.

If you did not take pregnancy leave

You are eligible for up to 63 weeks of parental leave. Your leave cannot start any earlier than the day your child is born or comes into your care.

If you are eligible (see above), you will receive a “top-up” of your salary for up to 17 weeks of your leave. The top-up consists of:

  • week 1 (while waiting for EI benefits): 93% of your salary;
  • week 2: your EI parental benefit payment plus 93% of your salary; and
  • weeks 3–17: your EI parental benefit payment plus a salary top-up that together totals 93% of your salary;
  • weeks 18–63: your EI parental benefit payment and no top-up.

To receive the top-up, you must submit proof to your supervisor or another Employer representative that you are in receipt of EI parental benefits. It does not matter if you are receiving standard or extended parental benefits.


Shortening your parental leave

If you wish to end your parental leave early, you must give written notice to your supervisor or another Employer representative at least four weeks before the original end of your parental leave.


Extending your parental leave

If you did not take pregnancy leave, you can extend your parental leave for an additional six consecutive weeks. This extension is an unpaid leave.

You must request the extended parental leave in writing to your supervisor or another Employer representative at least two weeks before the end of your parental leave.


Returning to work

You should return to your old job at the end of your pregnancy or parental leave. If this is not the case, please seek the assistance of an AMAPCEO Workplace Representative.


Credits, benefits, and pension contributions during pregnancy and parental leaves

If you are a regular (permanent) employee with less than 13 weeks’ service:

  • you will not accrue credits (e.g. vacation, seniority) during your unpaid leave; and
  • your insured benefits will continue for the first month of your leave, then stop.

If you are a regular (permanent) employee with more than 13 weeks’ service:

  • you will continue to accrue credits (e.g. vacation, seniority) during your leave;
  • your insured benefits (and employee premiums) will continue, unless you write your Employer to request that they stop; and
  • you can write your Employer to request that you continue to make pension contributions during your leave.

If you are a temporary, fixed-term, or contract employee and opted into the benefits plan:

  • your insured benefits will continue, provided you continue to pay the premiums.

If you have questions or need assistance

Please contact an AMAPCEO Workplace Representative in your District. They do not have to be in your Ministry.

Workplace Representatives are trained union members who have volunteered to confidentially assist members like you in the workplace. They should be your first point of contact in seeking information and representation with an issue at work.

Your Workplace Representative may ask you to use the union’s secure web-based system, RADAR, to provide details about your situation. RADAR will help you and your Workplace Representative keep track of things without the privacy concerns that could come from using the Employer’s email system.

Fact Sheet

Bargaining Unit: Ontario Public Service (OPS)

Collective Agreement Articles: 24

First Published: July 15, 2020

Last Updated: December 7, 2020

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