Two prominent UK employers are now offering employees paid leave in the event of pregnancy loss.
Channel 4 and digital bank Monzo will offer either partner up to two weeks' paid leave following a pregnancy loss such as a miscarriage, abortion or stillbirth.
“At Channel 4 we recognise that the loss of a pregnancy, no matter the circumstances, can be a form of grief that can have a lasting emotional and physical impact on the lives of many women and their partners," Channel 4's CEO Alex Mahon said in a statement announcing the policy last month .
"We hope that by giving away this pioneering policy we’re able to encourage other organisations to do the same," Mahon added.
Digital bank Monzo has announced a similar policy this week. Either partner will be offered up to 10 days of paid leave following any form of pregnancy loss.
The bank has also announced that employees undergoing "fertility treatments, diagnosis or consultations" will be offered up to eight additional days of extra paid leave each year, The Independent reports.
"This might be used for taking time to rest after a procedure, recover from the emotional effects of treatments or to attend outpatient appointments and scans," the bank said.
Responding to the companies' introduction of paid leave following pregnancy loss, the Miscarriage Association said: "It's good to see examples of supportive workplaces. We hope some of the recent publicity about paid bereavement leave will encourage more employers to do likewise."
More than one in five pregnancies ends in miscarriage — around a quarter of a million in the UK each year, according to the Miscarriage Association.
Under current UK law, employers are only required to offer paid leave to parents if they lose a baby 24 weeks or later into a pregnancy. If a woman suffers a pregnancy loss before the 24-week mark, she may be entitled to leave provided she obtains a note from her GP. However, there is no guarantee that this will be paid.
New Zealand voted in March to introduce mandatory paid leave for couples who suffer a miscarriage or stillbirth at any stage of a pregnancy.