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Pregnancy and associated leave in SOBI

I’m pregnant.  Whom should I inform?

When you are ready, please contact the School Manager so they can guide you through the processes to follow in the SOBI and College. An overview of the subsequent steps to follow is provided below:

If you work in a laboratory, you will have to notify your PI and the Health and Safety officer in the School of Biochemistry and Immunology as the Safety, Health and Welfare at work Act (2005) “requires female employees who either know or who believe themselves to be pregnant to declare their pregnancy to their employer as soon as possible so that a risk assessment can be performed taking account of the new circumstances.”

There is a form to be filled in which will identify any potential risks associated with your work so as to properly protect both you and your baby.  The form is available here or directly from the safety officer.

For all personnel, College policy is that “The staff member must notify her Head of School/Discipline/Area, in writing, as soon as reasonably practicable, but not later than 4 weeks before the commencement of Maternity Leave, of her intention to take Maternity Leave. Additionally, not later than the time of the above notification, she is obliged to supply the School/Discipline/Area with a medical certificate confirming the pregnancy and specifying the expected birth date.” 

If you contact the School manager, they will be able to help with what needs to be done e.g. you will also need to work with Human Resources (HR) to arrange maternity leave and maternity benefit. HR will also have information on options regarding extended maternity leave and parental leave.  More information is available at

The School manager will also arrange a meeting with you to discuss transition plans e.g. handover of responsibilities to avoid ‘extra work’ as a result of either going on leave or coming back from leave.  Depending on where you work, this would be with a line manager (if PSS), PI (if a post-doc) or as required for an academic member of staff (e.g. HOS).  If you wish to arrange a meeting while on leave to help plan your transition back to work, please let the School manager know and we will arrange one.

Breastfeeding facilities:

There are breastfeeding facilities on Level -1 in TBSI.  Please contact the School manager or the Health and Safety officer for information on access etc.

Paternity Leave

All members of staff who have completed at least 26 weeks of continuous employment with no break in service are entitled to five weeks paid paternity leave. 

The Head of School needs to sign this Application form (Paternity leave application form). You need to contact your line manager, College HR ( and the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection ( to arrange your leave. Further information on the process is provided here: Paternity leave procedure. 

Parental leave:

The SOBI offers flexibility in terms of how parental leave is used so please let us know what works best for you and we will do what we can to accommodate it.

Safety officer: Dr Darren Fayne (
School Manager:
Athena Swan Champion: Prof. Clair Gardiner (
Head of School: Prof. Derek Nolan (

March 2021.