Kansas governor expands parental leave for state employees

July 6, 2021 GMT

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Gov. Laura Kelly has expanded the paid leave that Kansas state employees can take from their jobs when they become parents or act as caregivers.

Kelly issued an executive order Tuesday that provides an extra two weeks of paid leave for state workers who are a child’s primary caregiver and an extra week for secondary caregivers. The order also makes foster parents eligible for the same paid leave.

Primary caregivers will now receive up to eight weeks of paid leave, rather than six. Secondary caregivers will receive four weeks instead of three.

The order directed the state Department of Administration to put the new policies into effect immediately. Kelly said the state is demonstrating a commitment to recruiting and keeping talented workers and creating a “supportive environment for our families.”

“Supporting working parents in our workforce is not only the right thing to do,” Kelly said in a statement. “It’s good for our economy.”

The order also says new state employees become eligible for paid leave after 180 days.