Chicago Archdiocesan staff will now receive 12 weeks of paid time off after the birth or adoption of a child

The Archdiocese of Chicago will begin offering 12 weeks of paid parental leave to its staff beginning July 1.

The new policy is open to fathers and mothers who just had children or adopted children. Staff who are benefits-eligible (those who work at least 26 hours a week) and who have worked at the archdiocese at least one month qualify for parental leave. Archdiocesan employees who have worked less than one year will receive one week paid parental leave for every month they worked.

Under the previous policy, female staff who gave birth or adopted used sick time and vacation time for pay during their parental leave. Employees who worked for at least three years usually had accumulated enough sick time to cover about six weeks of leave.

“We’ve had a policy that met the needs of most people,” said Betsy Bohlen, chief operating officer for the Archdiocese of Chicago. “For most people it worked, because they accrued sick time and used it. In other organizations they would have lost it. Here they keep it.”

There were some instances when it didn’t work for everyone, such as in the case of newer employees, she said, or someone who had to use their sick time for other health reasons.

When Archbishop Cupich came on board he wanted to ensure that the personnel policies were in line with church teaching.

Obviously we do want to be a voice for pro-life, family friendly kinds of policies,” Bohlen said. “The idea was to make sure that we have something that can work for all staff.”
continue at CNW

The running joke is that the only employment one cannot support a large Catholic family is working for a Catholic non-profit.  Bravo to the Archdiocese and Archbishop Cupich!


  1. In the diocese where I work (which will remain nameless) we receive no "sick days" at all. My wife was ill and bedridden for two days and I was forced to use some of my precious paid time off. With a wife and five children, it seems like we never get a vacation because all vacation days are used to help care for ill family members :(

    1. Sad, and I imagine very common across the US. Unfortunately modernizing diocesan workplace environments moves at the speed of Church. Hopefully this Chicago change gets people talking.


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