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The Canadian Press Policy on Family Leave

We have a practice of granting leaves of absence to staff, including supervisors, for personal family emergencies and compassionate needs. Managers and supervisors have the discretion to grant leaves based on a fair evaluation of the circumstances giving rise to the request. 

  • Leaves can be obtained from your supervisor/manager
  • Leaves may vary in length, depending on the situation
  • Some or all of the time may be paid
  • Regular bereavement leave may be extended by family leave

All requests for family leave under this policy should be made in person or if necessary by telephone by the employee to his or her manager. A decision on the request will be made by the manager after consultation with Human Resources staff.

 In urgent cases where time off is needed immediately, the manager can authorize it and consult afterwards with HR on whether or not the time off will be paid.

In deciding on the request, the company will consider factors and circumstances including: 

  1. Decisions on previous requests of a similar nature
  2. The employee’s general attendance record
  3. Whether the employee has vacation time, accumulated time and/or floating holidays outstanding
  4. Any other pertinent or relevant factors and circumstances

Human Resources will maintain a record of all requests for family leave under this policy, and all decisions.

Family Leave is intended to deal with . . .

  • Circumstances where there is an emotional attachment and where some type of support from the employee is needed.
    Examples: Accompanying a parent or spouse to an important medical appointment, caring for a sick child, etc. (see below)
  • Unanticipated personal emergencies.
    Examples: Cleaning up a flooded basement, allowing a serviceperson in to repair a broken furnace, etc.

Family Leave is NOT intended to deal with . . .

  • The routine circumstances of life. Employees are expected to make such arrangements without support from the company.
    Examples: Car repair, appliance delivery, etc.
  • Ongoing or long-term matters.
    Examples: Piano lessons, soccer practice, serious illness, etc.

Family Leave is intended to be short-term, and ordinarily would cover a period from a few hours to a few days.

It is not automatic that time off provided under the policy will be paid by the company. Depending on the nature of the request and the specific circumstances, the company may provide time off but require that some or all of it be taken through use of vacation days, floating holidays or accumulated time.

All employees who are parents are expected to have access to alternative child-care arrangements. It is not realistic or reasonable to expect the company to always be the backstop for child-related issues.

On a related note, it is expected that employees do everything possible to schedule medical and dental appointments outside of normal working hours. While it may be difficult to schedule appointments with some medical specialists at times that don’t interfere with work, most doctors and dentists in general practice have a wide range of office hours available for appointments.

The Family Leave policy is not a replacement or substitute for bereavement leave, which applies after the death of a spouse, child, parent, sibling or spouse’s parent. Details on bereavement leave are outlined in the collective agreement (Article 8).

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