Beginning in October, coinciding with Respect Life Month, the Diocese of Orange is expanding its parental leave policy by providing 100% pay for eight weeks and 50% pay for an additional four weeks.

The purpose of paid parental leave is to enable the employee to bond with their newborn or newly adopted child and to achieve a healthy balance between their employment and their new family obligations. Our Diocese believes the new paid parental leave benefit is among the most generous of any diocese in the country.

The Most Reverend Kevin Vann, Bishop of the Diocese of Orange, has frequently spoken in support of families, specifically pregnant women and mothers, while advocating for policies protecting their right to work.

“As we announce this wonderful news, I think of my mother, a maternity nurse who spent countless hours helping newborns, their parents and their families,” Bishop Vann said. “I know the generous expansion of paid parental leave for all our mothers and fathers would make her proud, as it does me.”

In answering the call of Pope Francis, Bishop Vann is taking unprecedented action to show our Diocese’s commitment in fostering a prolife environment.

Parental leave, also called “bonding leave,” is the time off parents take to bond with their new child. As you may know, the federal Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the
similar California Family Rights Act (CFRA), require certain employers to provide to eligible employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to bond with a new child.

In California, one of a handful of states with a paid family leave program, workers receive partial wage supplementation, approximately up to 60% of their salary for up to eight weeks, while taking time off to bond with a new child.

The Diocese of Orange is expanding its parental leave policy to supplement California state-provided Paid Family Leave (PFL) benefits to provide employees with up to 100% pay through the initial eight weeks of PFL following the birth or adoption of a child, with a 50% pay supplement for weeks 9-12.

To be eligible for the paid parental leave benefit, the employee must have been employed by the Diocese for at least 12 months, worked at least 1,250 hours in the 12 months preceding the leave and plans to return to work with the Diocese following the leave.

This expanded parental leave policy will be enormously helpful to our families and promote peace of mind for all the mothers and fathers celebrating new life, as does it align with Church teachings by demonstrating a profound respect for life outside of work.

Kathleen Khoury is the Director of Human Resources for the Diocese of Orange. For questions about the new parental leave policy, contact Kathleen at [email protected]. For more information on career opportunities within the Diocese of Orange, visit www.rcbo.org/careers