Parental Leave

Hannah Frischbutter has a big circle around the date Jan. 18 on her desk calendar. It will be her last week of work at Loewen Windows for another 18 months. She is their first employee to take the 18-month parental leave.

She is one of over 22,000 Canadians who have opted for the extended benefits since it became available on Dec. 2017.

“I love the idea of getting to be home with my kid longer. There’s so many developmental leaps and bounds that a kid makes between 12 months and 18 months,” says Frischbutter.
Pediatric Occupational Therapist, Lena Kublick, says that those leaps and bounds are better made in a home environment.

“Quality interaction with a caring adult in those first three years is vitally important,” says Kublick.

A concern Kublick has during this time the amount of time kids are spending on screens.

She says that no “screen time” is good time, and that it could hinder a child’s social development.

Kublick says that by the time a child is 18-months-old, they should be out of the house and interacting with new people.

“The extended leave could be good or bad,” says Kublick. “It really depends on the parent.”


Josh Goossen explores the financial difficulties that could be experienced if a single parent were to take the new 18-month leave.
How does Canada's parental leave compare to the rest of the world's?
Josh Goossen interviews Lena Kublick, a Pediatric Occupational Therapist, about the developmental effects of Canada's 18-month parental leave.
A look into the life of Kevin McLean, a stay-at-home-dad and freelance musician.
Hannah Frischbutter is preparing for her 18-month parental leave.
Exploring daycare options versus at-home care.