Departments often specify the terms of maternity/paternal leave under their sick leave policies. More progressive departments outline duty modifications for employees who become pregnant. Below are some examples of such contract language.
Click on a city name below for sample contract language from that jurisdiction.
Saskatoon, SK – Local 80
ARTICLE 31. PARENTAL LEAVE [Partial]
e) Where the pregnancy of an employee would reasonably interfere with the performance of the employee’s duties, the Fire Chief may require the employee to take a maximum of thirteen (13) weeks’ leave prior to the estimated date of birth. The onus for establishing that the pregnancy would reasonably interfere with duties shall lie with the Fire Chief. The Fire Chief and the Union will co-operate in accommodating alternate work.
Regina, SK – Local 181
ARTICLE 7 – LEAVE OF ABSENCE [Partial]
(h) Maternity, Parental and Adoption Leave
(v) Upon request of a firefighter and receipt of medical verification of pregnancy, the Fire Chief shall arrange for the transfer of such firefighter to another position within the fire department or, through mutual agreement with the association, outside of the fire department. The employee shall perform such duties as may be assigned during the term of the pregnancy and shall be paid her regular rate of pay while at work and performing such duties.
Burnaby, BC – Local 323; Maple Ridge, BC – Local 4449; Victoria, BC – Local 730 – share similar language
Maternity and Parental Leave [Partial]
(b) Notice Requirements and Commencement of Leave
(3) The Employer may require a pregnant employee to commence maternity leave where the duties of the employee cannot reasonably be performed because of the pregnancy. In such cases the employee’s previously scheduled leave period will not be affected.
Kamloops, BC – Local 913
ARTICLE 14: LEAVE OF ABSENCE [Partial]
14.3 c) Maternity and Parental Unpaid Leave
i) A firefighter that discovers that she is pregnant must inform this fact to Fire Administration immediately in writing and she will be immediately relieved of her suppression duties.
ii) The pregnant firefighter will be accommodated with alternate duties with the Fire Rescue Division which may consist of work in one of or combination of the following areas:
a) Fire Prevention & Public Education
b) Training Administration
c) Fire Dispatch – Assignment to Fire Dispatch will be for administrative duties and break relief and will not affect call back and overtime Dispatcher’s hours.
During the period of the alternate duties the firefighter will not suffer any loss of pay or benefits.
iii) An employee shall be granted fifty-two (52) weeks maternity leave of absence. Such leave may commence eleven (11) weeks prior to the week in which her predicted confinement occurs or at any time thereafter at the request of the employee. In no case shall an employee be required to return to work sooner than six (6) weeks following the birth, or termination of her pregnancy, unless a shorter time is requested by the employee with Doctor’s approval.
iv) Within fifty-two (52) weeks after a child’s birth, a birth father shall be granted up to twelve (12) weeks of parental leave.
v) All requests for maternity and parental leave shall be in written form and be given to the City at least four (4) weeks before the day the employee proposes to begin leave.
vi) During the period of maternity and parental leave, the City shall continue to pay the premiums of the Medical Services, Extended Health, Dental, Group Life and Accidental Death and Dismemberment.
vii) During the maternity or parental leave, the employee shall retain his/her seniority status in accordance with the Collective Agreement.
Surrey,BC – Local 1271
EMPLOYEE BENEFITS [Partial]
c) Maternity Leave
Temporary Transfer (Suppression) – Upon the request of a pregnant employee and the provision of satisfactory medical evidence, the City shall endeavour to temporarily transfer the employee out of the Suppression Division for the duration of the pregnancy or, alternatively, to relieve the employee of Suppression duties which are medically prohibited.
Terrace, BC – Local 2685
CLAUSE 29 – MATERNITY/PARENTAL LEAVE [Partial]
29.01 MATERNITY LEAVE – An employee shall have the right, upon written request, to a leave of absence for pregnancy on the following basis:
(.5) A pregnant employee shall have the option to refuse or to continue to operate a VDT. If reassignment is not possible, an employee shall be considered to be on leave of absence without pay until they qualify for maternity leave. An employee shall apply for maternity leave at the same time as leave of absence commences. Health and welfare benefits shall be continued in effect.
An employee who is temporarily reassigned to a position with a lower rate of pay shall be paid the lower rate.
West Kelowna, BC – Local 4457
ARTICLE 14: LEAVE OF ABSENCE [Partial]
14.04 Maternity Leave
Upon proof of an employee being pregnant they shall immediately be provided alternative duties that do not expose the mother or child to the hazards associated with suppression activities without loss of pay or benefits.
An employee shall be granted up to fifty-two (52) weeks maternity leave which may commence up to eleven (11) weeks prior to the child’s birth. Leave will automatically begin at the date of birth and in no case shall an employee return to work sooner than six (6) weeks following the birth, or termination of pregnancy, unless a shorter time is requested by the employee and approved by the attending physician.
Edmonton, AB – Local 209
2. MATERNITY AND PARENTAL LEAVE [Partial]
2.01. MATERNITY LEAVE
Maternity leave shall be granted by the City in accordance with the following:
2.01.04. Maternity leave shall be applied for in writing, at the earliest possible date, but not less than six (6) weeks prior to the date upon which maternity leave is to commence. The employee shall provide the City with a medical certificate giving the estimated date of delivery. Such leave shall commence at any time up to twelve (12) weeks prior to the estimated date of delivery. If, in the opinion of the City, the employee is unable to perform the duties of her position or such alternative position which may be available for which she is qualified, and in the absence of any valid, health-related disability attributable to the pregnancy, the employee shall be required to immediately commence maternity leave. An employee who is a member of the City’s Disability Plans and who subsequently experiences a maternity complication related to the valid, health-related portion of her pregnancy after the conclusion of the maximum period during which SUB PLAN benefits may be available, shall be entitled to receive the balance of disability benefits paid at the applicable level.
Strathcona, AB – Local 2461
10.03.04 Maternity and Parental Leave [Partial]
10.03.04.01 Maternity leave will be granted to a member in accordance with the Employment Standards Code. Members must have been employed with Strathcona County for 52 consecutive weeks. The maternity leave is not more than 15 weeks starting at any time during the 12 weeks immediately before the estimated date of delivery. The member must give six weeks written notice of the date she intends to begin leave and four weeks notice of the date she intends to return to active duty.
a) Health Related Portion of the Maternity Leave
During the two-week Employment Insurance waiting period, Strathcona County will top-up salary to 95% of the member’s regular earnings. Verification that a member is in receipt of employment insurance benefits is necessary to provide the top-up benefit. A medical certificate must be provided to Emergency Services, confirming the date the child was born and the duration of the leave that the physician indicates is health related. During the health-related portion of the maternity leave Strathcona County will top-up salary to 95% of the members’ regular earnings. The benefit coverage that the member has at the time of her leave will continue during the health related portion of the absence. At the end of this period, parental leave will commence, and benefit coverage will continue if the member pays both employer employee portions of the cost of the premiums.
b) When a pregnancy interferes with the performance of duties or the Administration has a concern for the member’ s health, the Administration may reassign a member to duties at no loss of pay, or by notice in writing to the employee, require them commence to sick leave.
North Bay, ON – Local 284
ARTICLE 3 HOURS OF WORK [Partial]
3.10 Upon submission of medical proof the employer shall assign pregnant employees to duties other than suppression without any loss of any wages or any benefits.
St. Thomas, ON – Local 447
ARTICLE 14 – LEAVE OF ABSENCE [Partial]
14.05 The City shall grant Pregnancy/Parental Leave in accordance with the Employment Standards Act.
A pregnant employee shall not be required to operate a Video Display Terminal against her will and such employee shall be entitled to transfer to alternative work without loss of pay, seniority or other benefits.
Notwithstanding the above clauses, effective upon confirmation by the Employment Insurance Commission of the appropriateness of this provision as a Supplemental Benefit Plan, an employee commencing Maternity Leave and who is in receipt of Employment Insurance benefits shall be paid a supplemental benefit. That benefit will be equivalent to the difference between eighty-five percent (85%) of the employee’s base weekly earnings and the sum of the employee’s weekly Employment Insurance benefit and any other income and shall commence upon receipt by the employer of the employee’s Employment Insurance cheque stub as proof that the employee is in receipt of Employment Insurance benefits, and shall continue while the employee is in receipt of such benefits for a maximum of seventeen (17) weeks (includes two (2) week waiting period plus fifteen (15) weeks maternity leave). Employment Insurance cheque stubs must be submitted bi-weekly as payment of this benefit will only be made upon submission to the employer. The employee’s base weekly earnings shall mean the employee’s regular straight time rate of pay times the employee’s regularly scheduled weekly hours of work excluding overtime, call-backs, court time, or any other premium pay, or any taxable benefits or any other special payments, fees or allowances. The term “other special payment” includes vacation pay and payment for paid holidays.
Brampton, ON – Local 1068
ARTICLE XIX – LEAVE OF ABSENCE [Partial]
PREGNANCY AND PARENTAL LEAVE
19.04 The parties have agreed that Pregnancy Leave and Parental Leave shall be administered in accordance with the Employment Standards Act and the following provisions:
A female FIRE FIGHTER who is pregnant shall provide the Fire Chief medical verification of said condition as soon as reasonably practicable and no later than sixteen (16) weeks gestation. Upon receipt of medical verification of pregnancy, the Fire Chief shall arrange, at his earliest convenience, for the transfer of such Fire Fighter to another Division within the Brampton Fire and Emergency Services. This employee shall perform such duties as may be assigned and shall be paid her regular rate of pay while at work and performing such duties.
Click on a city name below for sample contract language from that jurisdiction.
Oakland, CA – Local 55
6.3 Pregnancy Leave And Work During Pregnancy [Partial]
6.3.3 Transfer To Non-Hazardous Duty.
A pregnant bargaining unit member may request to transfer to a nonhazardous duty assignment within the department by submitting the request to the Personnel Officer with a certification signed by the bargaining unit member’s health care provider.
188.8.131.52 The bargaining unit member shall be granted time off, with full pay and benefits, until an appropriate assignment can be determined.
184.108.40.206 The bargaining unit member shall not lose any benefits including rate of pay, step increases, raises, retirement, sick leave, vacation, medical insurance, or seniority while in a paid status.
220.127.116.11 The bargaining unit member shall remain in that nonhazardous assignment until the bargaining unit member is no longer disabled due to pregnancy or related medical condition and her health care provider certifies that she is able to resume the duties of her regular assignment.
18.104.22.168 The bargaining unit member shall be entitled to all of the rights and privileges of transitional work provisions set forth in Section 10.4 of this MOU.
6.3.4 Continuation In Non-Hazardous Duty Assignment.
At the conclusion of the pregnancy and/or pregnancy disability, the bargaining unit member may request to remain assigned (or be assigned if not previously on non-hazardous duty) to a non-hazardous duty assignment. The request shall be granted if the request is accompanied by medical certification that it is unadvisable for the member to return to hazardous duty or if the member is physically unable to pass a required return to duty test. In all other cases the request shall be granted at the discretion of the Fire Chief. The total time a bargaining unit member can be assigned to non-hazardous duty shall not exceed one year.
Orange County, CA – Local 2384
Section 11. Parenthood Leave [Partial]
D. Pregnant employees may also apply for a Non-occupational Disability Leave for the term of disability, as provided in Section 5., of this Article.
Boulder, CO – Local 900
ARTICLE XXIV. MATERNITY LEAVE
It is recognized that reproductive health can be affected adversely by the conditions encountered in fire
A. Provisions for Pregnancy
- When a member becomes pregnant, it is strongly advised, though not required, that she report her condition to her supervisor.
- Once a member has provided the department with verification of her pregnancy from her own doctor, she shall be offered a non-hazardous duty assignment within the department.
- A member is not required to accept a light duty assignment. However, she is encouraged to do so because of the unpredictable nature of emergency response. There is potential risk to a pregnant woman and/or her developing fetus from activities associated with normal operational duties including firefighting, hazardous materials response and EMS exposures.
- A member who is pregnant has the option of using any or all of her accumulated leave to date, first sick then vacation time. An employee may save 10 days of sick leave after such time, an employee may be granted an additional leave of absence, without pay, for up to 150 calendar days.
- After giving birth, or at the termination of the pregnancy, the member shall be returned to her previously held position upon approval from her personal physician. Such verification of readiness to work shall be in writing. This verification shall be given to the designated City Physician for a fitness for duty physical. This provision shall not supersede Article XV in the event of layoffs.
- If a member becomes temporarily disabled as a result of pregnancy or childbirth, light duty may be offered during the time of disability and recovery.
- An employee who is unable to return to work at the end of this 150 day leave of absence, will be granted up to an additional 215 days leave without pay upon providing medical documentation acceptable to the City, of her inability to work. Employees who require any portion of this additional 215 days will be eligible to return to the first available position at the same or lower rank held prior to maternity leave. If an employee assumes a lower ranking position under the terms of this provision, they will receive the corresponding pay rate.
- Employees who are on leave of absence, without pay, in excess of 365 days due to pregnancy relinquish all rights to automatic re-employment, in any capacity.
B. Hazardous Exposures
Hazardous exposures for both men and women during the time of conception can adversely affect the outcome of the pregnancy. Any member shall be offered a light duty assignment for a maximum of 30 calendar days per year if specifically requested for the purpose of lower risk conception.
C. Parental Leave
Employees are entitled to all benefits under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).
D. Benefit Provisions
- All wages, benefits, and seniority of the former position shall continue to accrue for the employee on light duty.
- Light duty – Non-hazardous, duty in the City available to all full-time, permanent, and probationary workers. Guaranteed, but not required.
- Reproductive health – Male and female wellness with respect to conceiving, fetal care, and birth.
South Pasadena, FL – Local 747
Section 9 – SICK LEAVE [Partial]
(G). Some slight injuries or illnesses, or temporary conditions such as pregnancy may prohibit the performance of regularly assigned duties; however, there may be other duties that such employees may be able to perform during the recuperative period without aggravating their health. Providing that light duty work within the employee’s temporary restrictions is available and the employee produces a doctor’s statement indicates tl1at “light duty” is acceptable, the Fire Chief or his designee may assign the employee on a temporary basis to fulfill such duties as the employee’s health and condition permit.
Pinellas Park, FL – Local 2193
Section 4. Short Term Disability[Partial]
C. The City, at its sole discretion, retains the right to offer an employee who sustains a non-line of duty medical condition, illness or injury a temporary light duty or modified duty assignment for a period, which may be less than, but in any case shall not exceed six months, except in the case of pregnancy for a certified firefighter. Such duty shall be in accord with the restrictions set forth by the authorized treating physician.
Davie, FL – Local 2315
When a fire department member becomes pregnant and reaches their second trimester, they may request a non hazardous re-assignment. The Town of Davie will make every reasonable attempt to provide a light duty capacity position. Only in the case where it has a significant operational impact as determined by the Town, shall the light duty re-assignment be denied. A member that is eligible for FMLA may request a leave of absence during pregnancy or after delivery. Leave time taken shall be agreed upon by the Fire Department and the member requesting , i.e. vacation, sick or leave without pay. While on leave, the pregnant member will retain active status. All of the members rights and privileges will be protected in accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act. All members shall provide a written release from attending physician stating that she is physically able to return to work.
Local 2315 members may request paternity leave in accordance with FMLA. All reasonable requests shall be accommodated. Leave may include sick, vacation, or leave without pay.
Palm Harbor, FL – Local 2980
MATERNITY LEAVE AND ASSIGNMENT DUTIES DURING PREGNANCY
Section 1. The employee must be a permanent employee to be granted maternity leave or assignment during pregnancy, unless otherwise authorized by the District.
Section 2. Employee will provide the Department with verification from a physician of employees’ pregnancy and ability to continue normal duties. The employee will be permitted to continue normal working duties unless otherwise advised by her physician.
Section 3. At the employees request or at the direction of their attending physician, the affected employee will be placed on “Light Duty, if available. Light Duty will consist of;
- Work hours consisting of Monday through Friday, 0800- 1700 or as assigned by the supervisor and approved by the Fire Chief.
- Miscellaneous Fire Department duties, none of which will consist of duties that are restricted by the employee‟s physician.
Section 4. Employee will be allowed to continue working Light Duty, without reduction in regular pay including incentives, up to her delivery date unless otherwise advised by her physician. Employee will be converted to 40 hour employee for accrual and use of vacation and sick time.
Section 5. Upon date of delivery, or sooner on physician’s advice, employee will be permitted to use first any accumulated sick leave and then any accumulated annual leave, should the employee choose to do so for up to a twelve (12) week period as per the Family Medical Leave Act. During this period of time, employee will retain all rights and benefits contractually due her.
Section 6. Upon returning to work, employee must present a statement from her physician indicating that she is physically able to return to work without limitation, excluding light duty.
Section 7. Any employee whose spouse gives birth will be granted leave up to a twelve (12) week period as per the Family Medical Leave Act.
Belleville, IL – Local 53
Section 12.6 Pregnancy
It is recognized that the duties of a firefighter are sometimes dangerous and often physically arduous with exposure to smoke and hazardous materials. It is also impossible to predict when circumstances arise which will pose a risk to firefighters. While it is understood such dangers are inherent in the position of firefighter, the dangers create a special risk to pregnant firefighters and their fetuses. The following policy is enacted to reduce physical hazards placed on pregnant firefighters.
- Qualifications. Only firefighters who have provided medical proof that they are pregnant are eligible to participate in the Firefighter Pregnancy Policy. The Fire Department reserves the right to delay acting on a request to participate for one week. Participation is voluntary. Only firefighters who request participation are eligible. No firefighter will be placed in the program against the firefighter’s wishes.
- Temporary Assignment. A pregnant firefighter who request placement in the program will be temporarily reassigned to a non-suppression position. First consideration will be for placement within the Fire Department, but in the absence of available work the firefighter may be placed in another city department. The availability of this reasonable accommodation shall be determined by consensus of a panel made up of the Fire Chief, Human Resources Director and Local 53 President. Should this panel determine no reasonable accommodation through a pregnancy light duty position is available; the decision cannot be challenged through the grievance process. However, the decision may be appealed directly to the Mayor.
- Duration. The assignment shall last for the duration of the employee’s pregnancy including the necessary recuperation period. The employee shall be required to submit to the City a return to work release from her physician prior to her reinstatement to her regular duties. The City retains the right to require that the employee submit to an evaluation by a physician of the City’s choice. In the event of a disagreement between the employee’s physician and the City’s physician concerning the employee’s fitness to return to full duty, the determination of an independent physician selected by the agreement of the employee’s and City’s physicians shall prevail.
- Relation with other benefits. Participation in the voluntary pregnancy policy does not affect a firefighter’s eligibility for sick leave, FMLA leave or other benefits. Any probationary period in which the firefighter is on at the time of the pregnancy assignment will be extended by the length of the special assignment.
Wichita, KS – Local 135
Article 17: Sick Leave [Partial]
F. Upon learning of pregnancy and having confirming documentation, the employee will notify her immediate supervisor who will in turn notify the Fire Chief/Airport Public Safety Chief through channels. The employee shall be temporarily assigned to non-hazardous duty, and the employee shall be returned to normal duty after the end of the pregnancy in accordance with the Departmental regulations (lo be developed based upon medical advice and verification by the Human Resources Director).
Dexter Area, MI – Local 4090
Section G. Leaves of Absence [Partial]
2. iii. Maternity Leave. Whenever an Employee becomes pregnant she shall furnish the Board with a letter from her physician stating the approximate date of delivery. She shall be permitted to work in accordance with her physician’s recommendations. The Employee shall be granted leave until six months following the date of delivery or up to one year if medical complications arise due to the pregnancy I birth. The Employee shall be permitted to return to work providing her physician approves. The Employee shall return to her former classification/position without loss of seniority.
Santa Fe, NM – Local 2059
ARTICLE 244-NON-HAZARDOUS DUTY FOR PREGNANCY
The Employer will offer non-hazardous duty for pregnancy from the time the pregnant employee provides written notification. The pregnant employee will be on non-hazardous duty from the time of acceptance of such duty until maternity leave begins.
Non-hazardous duty shall mean an assignment within the Fire Department in which the pregnant employee will not be exposed to bloodborne or airborne pathogens, hazardous materials, products of combustion, or arduous physical labor.
Acceptance of non-hazardous duty shall not result in a reduction in pay, an adverse effect on time in service, or ability to promote.
North Las Vegas, NV – Local 1607
Section 17.03 Modified Duty
(A) An employee incapacitated due to an injury that is not work related may. at the discretion of the Fire Chief or their designee, and with the treating physician’s statement of work restriction(s) be placed on modified duty assignment within the City. The employee shall be paid at their current wage for hours worked in a forty-hour work week. When an employee is assigned to modified duty, time accrued and charged shall be subject to the conversion factor between suppression and non-suppression personnel. While on modified duty, the employee shall participate in department level training or classes that other fire personnel are undergoing, as long as the class activities do not pose any risk to the employee.
(B) The City and the Fire Department recognize pregnancy as a normal occurrence in a woman’s life and therefore establish this policy to implement the provision of modified duty assignments for female employees that are pregnant. Once notification has been made to the City of their pregnancy, the employee shall be removed from suppression duties upon their request. The employee shall have the option of being assigned to modified duty or begin using their leave time. This duty will be assigned at their current wage for hours worked in a forty- hour work week.