Adoption Policy Honoring Steve Simon Recognized as Best in Industry

By Loni Freeman
Loni is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources with a passion for people development. She wears many hats, from hall monitor to cheerleader, and uses her super power of asking the right questions to solve for the root cause.

AFW 2015 social image 1-01[2]SSPR is proud to be recognized by the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption as one of the 100 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces of 2015! We have earned the ranking #1 in the PR industry and #6 out of small businesses.

At SSPR, we recognize that families come in all shapes and sizes, and growing families through adoption has been a part of the fabric of our organization since its founding in 1978. Our former CEO and founder, the late Steve Simon, along with his wife, Linda, adopted two children. Our current CEO, Heather Kelly, and her husband have also grown their family by adopting two children, and Heather remains a passionate advocate for adoption within our organization and beyond. Last we counted, at least 10% of SSPR staff has been affected by adoption in their own families.

While we have always supported adoptive families informally, this year we instituted a formal adoption benefits program in honor of our late founder, friend and mentor, Steve Simon. Through our adoption benefits policy, which provides full time employees up to $6,000 for assistance with adoption fees when welcoming a child into their family, we offer our staff the support to build families in the way they choose. Not every family looks the same, and we want our employees to build the families they want. We try to reflect that ideal in all of our parental policies.

In addition to direct financial support for adoption through reimbursement, all full-time employees welcoming a new child into their family can take up to 6 weeks of fully paid parental leave. At the end of 6 weeks, employees may return at a reduced schedule for an additional 6 weeks. Parental leave is entirely separate from vacation and sick time, so that employees can still enjoy R&R time throughout the year as needed.

Every child deserves a safe and permanent home. We believe that if we can help our employees provide that for a child, it’s resources well spent. Next month is National Adoption Month, and we want to do our part to help raise awareness. There are more than 100,000 children in the U.S. foster care system waiting to be adopted. Every year, more than 20,000 children in foster care turn 18 and age out of the system without families.

For more information, and to view the full list of adoption-friendly workplaces, visit the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption website.



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