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Netherlands: 24 weeks of paid leave for gender transitioners

Around 400,000 employees of large companies offer leaves for transitioners which are more generous than those offered to women after childbirth.

AUTOR 5/Evangelical_Focus AMSTERDAM 14 DE AGOSTO DE 2023 15:00 h
A building in Amsterdam with the colors of the LGBTQI+ flag, during Pride celebrations in July 2023. / Photo: [link]Peyman Shojaei[/link].

Several large companies in the Netherlands are offering a special paid leave for workers who identify as transgender and begin a medical transition.



According to data collected by the state-owned news agency Nos, there are already 400,000 workers that could apply for such a leave.



According to newspaper Reformatorisch Dagblad, these changes in the collective agreement between the businesses and their workers are especially seen in large companies such as tech giant Philips and the largest private post service PostNl.



According to European news website CNE, most agreements offer a paid leavefor gender transitioning of up to 24 weeks. In the case of retail group Ahold Delhaize (130,000 employees), the leave for those who begin a gender transition is of 33 weeks.



These figures contrast with other paid leaves offered to Dutch workers, such as the maternal leave, which by law is 16 weeks for mothers  and 5 days for fathers.



 



Not yet by law



The LGBT group Transgender Network, welcomed the increasing inclusion of these paid leaves but is asking for the measure to be included as a right by law for all people working in the Netherlands. The government has said it does not plan to look into this demand this year.



A spokesperson of Christian care organisation NPV, Elise van Hoek-Burgerhart, told Reformatorisch Dagblad she thought such gender transition paid leaves were disproportionate when compared with maternal leaves. “Staff who want time off to provide informal care cannot count on such a generous arrangement either”, she added.



Given the low number of people who actually transition medically, the offer of these companies might mainly be a public statement of affirmation of LGBT policies, she said.     


 

 


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