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CEO Marissa Mayer doubles Yahoo maternity leave

Marissa Mayer has extended Yahoo's maternity leave to 16 weeks for women, eight weeks for men.

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Marissa Mayer, Yahoo! CEO, said she would return to work weeks are giving birth to a baby boy. (Jemal Countess/Getty Images)

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has extended the company's maternity leave policy for both men and women, almost doubling the allotted amount of paid time off for new mothers and fathers. 

Female Yahoo employees can now take up to 16 weeks off — salaried and with benefits — after having a baby, and fathers can take eight. All employees can also opt for eight weeks off for new children via adoption, foster child placement or surrogacy.

Yahoo is also offering parents $500 towards child-related expenses like house cleaning, groceries and babysitters. 

"Over the last several months, we’ve introduced new benefits like free food to make Yahoos’ days easier, new smartphones to encourage innovation, and updated computers to speed productivity," Yahoo said in a statement to Mashable"Recently, we rolled out some new and improved benefits to support the happiness and well-being of Yahoos and their families" 

The shift in policy comes just a couple months after Mayer came under fire for banning telecommuting, and nine months after the CEO's own pregnancy — for which she took a quick two weeks off. 

"It's a smart move," Rachel Sklar, founder of The Li.st, an organization dedicated to elevate the status of women in New Media and technology, told CNBC. "It suggests a long-term strategy. This is a great precedent."

However, the new policy still lags behind other Silicon Valley giants, as the New York Times reports: Google employees get 22 weeks of paid maternity leave; Facebook gives both moms and dads four months of paid leave. 

Mayer, 37, took the reins at Yahoo in July 2012 after leaving Google. She is ranked among Forbes' most powerful women

More from GlobalPost: Marissa Mayer, Yahoo! CEO, gives birth to baby boy — due back at work next week

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/business/technology/130430/ceo-marissa-mayer-doubles-yahoo-maternity-leave