Parents

'As much time as they want': Netflix offers 'unlimited' leave for new parents

It’s hard to find a subject that causes more angst for soon-to-be parents than maternity and paternity leave. How much time will they get — or not get? How much pay will they have to sacrifice? How secure will their jobs be while they’re away?

On Tuesday, employees of one U.S. company got some news to help them breathe a little bit easier. Netflix announced that it would begin offering employees "unlimited" maternity and paternity leave during the first year after a child's birth or adoption.

Tawni Cranz, chief talent officer at Netflix, issued the following statement on the company’s U.S. and Canada blog:

“At Netflix, we work hard to foster a ‘freedom and responsibility’ culture that gives our employees context about our business and the freedom to make their own decisions along with the accompanying responsibility. With this in mind, today we’re introducing an unlimited leave policy for new moms and dads that allows them to take off as much time as they want during the first year after a child’s birth or adoption.

“We want employees to have the flexibility and confidence to balance the needs of their growing families without worrying about work or finances. Parents can return part-time, full-time, or return and then go back out as needed. We’ll just keep paying them normally, eliminating the headache of switching to state or disability pay. Each employee gets to figure out what’s best for them and their family, and then works with their managers for coverage during their absences.

“Netflix’s continued success hinges on us competing for and keeping the most talented individuals in their field. Experience shows people perform better at work when they’re not worrying about home. This new policy, combined with our unlimited time off, allows employees to be supported during the changes in their lives and return to work more focused and dedicated.”

What do you think of this policy? Take our poll below, or let us know on the TODAY Parents Facebook page!

Follow TODAY.com writer Laura T. Coffey on Twitter @ltcoff and Google+.

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