Based on the success and feedback from Ford’s maternity workshops, which provide expectant mothers with practical information on matters related to maternity and flexible working arrangements, Ford has launched the paternity workshop.
As contained in a statement released on Thursday, the session will start with an ice-breaker; a ‘pregnancy suit’ for participants to try on. The suit, which includes an ‘empathy belly’, simulates some of the physical effects of pregnancy and gives dads-to-be an insight into how their partners may be feeling, carrying the weight of a baby.
Although the workshops cover maternity and paternity policies and information that is available on the company’s internal website, Ford says bringing expectant fathers together is meant to creates a personalized environment where they can talk about their excitement, share experiences or concerns.
During the workshops, the expecting fathers are provided with information on statutory entitlements, company policy and provision, health and safety considerations, flexible working policy*, the return to work process and the salary sacrifice; Childcare Voucher scheme**. In addition, support is also provided through the Ford Parent network.
Lara Nicoll, Manager of Diversity and Inclusion at Ford of Britain, said: “During a life-changing, often nerve-wracking, experience, Ford wants to make sure parents feel fully supported, and are confident that they know what will happen when they return to work. We have run Maternity workshops for a number of years, and it is important that we now offer the same advice and support to expectant fathers.”
The first workshop was well received:
“It was a good opportunity to understand not only some of the policies that affect me as a future father and a Ford employee but of the maternity rights of my wife,” said Chris Peain, Cost Estimator, Product Development.