Facebook’s new bereavement policy is a great example of how grieving workers should be treated

Companies everywhere, take note: Facebook is updating their bereavement leave policy to be more flexible for employees who have lost loved ones — and that is something that all workers deserve.

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg annouced the company’s new bereavement policy on Tuesday, which offers up to 20 days of paid leave for employees who have lost immediate family members, and 10 days of paid leave for extended family.

The policy will also allow employees to take up to six weeks of paid leave to care for sick relatives, and “paid family sick time,” which offers three days of paid leave to care for family with short-term illnesses, like a child with a stomach bug or broken bone. Sheryl wrote about the new policy on Facebook, referencing the tragic and sudden death of her husband, Dave, in 2015.

In the U.S. and U.K., employees are not obligated to bereavement leave, so employers have the right to choose if, and how much, an employee can take off work while grieving a loss.

In Sandberg’s announcement, she claimed 40 percent of private sector workers still do not get paid time off after the death of a loved one.

We hope more companies follow Facebook’s lead to offer more flexibility for grieving employees.

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