Arion Bank employees guaranteed 80% of salary during parental leave

Arion Bank employees guaranteed 80% of salary during parental leave

Arion Bank employees guaranteed 80% of salary during parental leave - mynd

For many years Arion Bank has placed great importance on equality in all areas of its business. The main emphasis in recent years has been on ensuring that people are paid equal salaries for equally valuable jobs. The Bank first gained equal pay certification from the union VR in 2015 and was awarded the Ministry of Welfare’s equal pay symbol in 2018. In the last equal pay audit, the unexplained gender pay gap at the Bank was down to 0.1%.

In 2020, the CEO of Arion Bank signed a declaration of intent on the Equality Scale, stating that Arion Bank intends to make a focused effort to balance out the gender ratio at senior management level. The Bank’s new equality and human rights policy and action plan place greater emphasis on balancing gender ratios at the Bank, not just at management level but throughout different job categories, committees and business units.

More fathers taking paternity leave and more women in management

One of the measures taken by Arion Bank to address equality is to guarantee its employees 80% of their salary during parental leave. The Bank will therefore provide employees on parental leave with additional financial support where applicable and in accordance with the rules of the Parental Leave Fund. This is on top of payments from the Parental Leave Fund and contractual benefits, so that the salary during parental leave reaches 80% of normal salary. The Bank also encourages its employees to exercise their right to parental leave in full.

It is a fact that the average salaries of men, both at Arion Bank and in society in general, are higher than the average salaries of women, and men generally exercise their right to parental leave less than women. By guaranteeing 80% salary during parental leave, irrespective of gender and other factors, the Bank has made it easier for employees to take parental leave. One of the aims of this measure is therefore to increase the number of fathers taking paternity leave. In the long run it could be an important factor in reducing the gender pay gap and achieving gender balance in management and different job categories. Currently women represent 44% of the Bank’s management.

Benedikt Gíslason, CEO of Arion Bank:

“It has been a pleasure to serve on the Bank’s equality committee and help to create a new equality and human rights action plan. The 3-year plan goes further than previously in the measures we propose to help achieve a gender balance, not just at the top level of management, but throughout all areas of the Bank.

We also continue to encourage people to exercise their right to parental leave, irrespective of gender or other factors. We want to make it easier for our employees to take parental leave by guaranteeing 80% salary for all new parents during this precious and crucial period of their lives and that of their children. By doing this we also aspire to make Arion Bank an even more attractive workplace for young and talented people.”