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University of Tennessee Announces New Policy Regarding Paid Leave for Employees

For Immediate Release
Jan 17, 2020 

KNOXVILLE – The University of Tennessee has announced a new policy that gives paid time off for employees to donate a body organ or bone marrow.
The Body Organ and Bone Marrow Donation Leave Policy gives eligible faculty and staff up to six weeks of paid time off to donate a body organ and up to one week of paid time off to donate bone marrow. This policy will be named the Laura McGinnis Policy on Organ Donation after UT Institute of Agriculture employee Frankie McGinnis’ daughter, who passed away after experiencing complications from an organ donation.
“We hope this policy will honor Ms. McGinnis’ daughter and better equip our employees to make this selfless donation,” Interim President Randy Boyd said.
Leave may be taken in one continuous period or in smaller increments for any medical reason related to the donation. This policy will go into effect March 1, 2020.
In addition, the University has created a taskforce to make recommendations on a policy that will provide 12 weeks paid family leave for eligible faculty and staff with a goal of having a policy in place by July 1. The announcement follows Gov. Bill Lee’s executive order that provides 12 weeks of paid family leave for state employees. While the executive order did not have higher education implications, the UT System had been researching an expansion of parental and family leave and how it could be implemented in an academic setting.
“We applaud the governor’s leadership in demonstrating the tremendous importance of family,” Boyd said. “I hope that these policies portray our commitment to the support of our employees’ families.”


Tiffany Carpenter, 865-974-1476,, 827 Andy Holt Tower, 1331 Circle Park, Knoxville, TN 37996

Melissa Tindell, 865-974-0741,, P267 Andy Holt Tower, 1331 Circle Park, Knoxville, TN 37996

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