The Pakistan Cricket Board has announced a parental support policy for cricketers under which, women cricketers are entitled to take up to 12 months of paid maternity leave and will be guaranteed a contract extension for the following year. On the other hand male cricketers, who are expectant or new fathers, will also be entitled to up to 30 days of fully paid leave.
According to a press release, the policy allows gives women cricketers “the option to transfer to a non-playing role until the commencement of their maternity leave leading up to the birth of their child.”
Upon conclusion of the maternity leave, the player will be reintegrated into cricketing activities and provided adequate medical and physical support in respect to their post-childbirth rehabilitation.
Similarly, if a woman player is required to travel for cricketing activities, the PCB will support the player by allowing her to travel with a support person of her choice to assist in caring for her infant child, with the travel and accommodation costs to be shared equally.
Men players can take a fully paid leave within 56 days of the birth of their child.
“The PCB has a duty of care towards its cricketers and at every turn, it has taken measures to support them. In this relation, it is appropriate that we have a player-friendly parental support policy so that our professional cricketers can feel fully supported during an important stage in their lives, without worrying about their careers,” said PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan in a statement.
“To have this policy for our women cricketers was even more significant,” continued Khan. “Women play a pivotal role in the development of a society and our women cricketers have brought us laurels and recognition at the world stage.”
“Now that we have a maternity leave policy, I am hopeful that it will attract more women and girls to take up the sport as this will help them strike the crucial work-life balance,” he added.
Former captain of Pakistani women cricket team Sana Mir appreciated the decision taken by the board and congratulated everyone involved.