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Introducing Osedea's equitable and inclusive parental program

Ivana Markovic
Nov 21, 2022 ∙ 2 mins
Osedea's equitable and inclusive parental program

Employees deserve more than the bare minimum dental plan and yoga membership to excel personally and professionally. That’s why, when it comes to taking care of our team members, we make it our responsibility to support them in reaching their life goals. We do this by putting our money where our mouth is to offer high impact, inclusive and equitable benefits.

One area where we’d like to help? Supporting team members who want to start a family, whatever that may look like.

Here are a few reasons why this issue is important to us:

  • Québec–home of our founding studio–is ahead of most Canadian provinces in terms of parental benefits, thanks to the Québec Parental Insurance Plan (QPIP). But QPIP still doesn’t cover 100% of a parent’s salary during their leave.
  • There are grey areas within Québec’s 2021 Medically Assisted Reproduction Program, which doesn’t account for the realities of many individuals. The program lacks inclusive benefits, especially for surrogates and same-sex couples.
  • Due to financial concerns, a common issue for couples starting a family is that one parent may be reluctant to take much parental leave, meaning they lose out on precious time with their child from the very start.

A more equitable parental program

To give our employees the chance to start a family without having to make sacrifices, whatever their gender or sexual orientation, we created our latest benefit program called “Building Families.”

It’s designed to support Osedea families in their parenthood journey, and make that journey inclusive (regardless of gender or diagnosis). This new benefit fills the gaps left by government programs, promotes equality and gives choice, flexibility, and support in the journey to parenthood, which looks different for everyone.

“Deciding to start a family is a big decision, and an exciting one,” says Martin Coulombe, founder of Osedea. “We believe that anyone can be a child’s caregiver, regardless of gender identity or sexual orientation. That’s why we offer everyone at the company equal support to start a family, care for that family, and create a bond with their new child.”

Building Families is one of the first programs in Quebec that provides fertility, adoption and parental-leave perks to help employees build a family their own way. The initiative offers a range of benefits that provide support and flexibility to employees throughout the journey. And while government programs differ between countries, Osedea is offering this policy to employees who work out of any of our three international offices in Montreal, Nantes, and London.

Here are the details of our new program:

  • 80% of fertility-treatment costs, up to $20,000 CAD, including:
    • Coverage of extra treatment cycles of ovarian stimulation
    • Coverage of extra treatment cycles of in vitro fertilisation (IVF)
    • Coverage of cycles of intrauterine insemination
    • Coverage of fertility preservation cycles for all genders, including storage for five years
    • Coverage of surrogacy-related expenses
  • 80% of local or international adoption costs, including legal fees, up to $20,000 CAD
  • Top-up of government parental benefits: 12 weeks paid leave at 100% of salary, paid by the employer, for any member of a parenting team, including biological or adoptive parents, common-law partners and legal guardians.

Our goal is to place the employee at the centre of our decision-making process, start the discussion around parental benefit plans that include the LGBTQIA+ community and also inspire other companies to take that step too, so we create a more equitable society for parents.