Australian employer National Roads and Motorists’ Association (NRMA) Group has agreed to pay superannuation on the unpaid portion of parental leave as part of its aim to close the gender pay gap for females.
The superannuation payment, a type of pension plan in Australia, will increase by an average of $5,600 (£3,125) as of this month, based on last year’s parental leave figures across the business. Currently women who retire between the ages of 60 and 64 will end their careers with a median superannuation payout of almost $60,000 (£33,482) less than their male colleagues.
The payment was introduced as part of the group’s updated parental leave policy, which offers primary carers 18 weeks of paid leave and 36 weeks of unpaid leave. As part of the update, the NRMA will continue to make regular superannuation contributions for parents throughout their unpaid leave and as they return to work.
In addition, the NRMA introduced a variety of policies to better support staff, including flexible and hybrid working, domestic and family violence policies and a carers policy.
Rohan Lund, chief executive officer at NRMA Group, said: “The unpaid portion of parental leave and the fact many parents return to work part-time as they balance work and family commitments has a devastating impact on the growth of super funds. While more fathers are choosing to take parental leave, the overwhelming majority continues to be women and this affects their superannuation.
“The NRMA is addressing this as part of our commitment to closing the gender pay gap within our business, improving retirement outcomes and supporting all staff, regardless of gender, choosing to take unpaid parental leave. As the amount of superannuation needed for a comfortable retirement continues to rise, it is more important than ever we make sure choosing to spend vital time with new family members with isn’t at the cost of a comfortable retirement.”