Apple and Facebook offer to freeze eggs for female staff

Facebook has started offering female staff up to $20,000 to have their eggs frozen and Apple will pay for its female employees to go through the same process from January

Apple and Facebook have upped the ante in their battle for the best talent by offering to pay for female employees to freeze their eggs, British “The Telegraph” reports.

Facebook has started offering female staff up to $20,000 (£12, 570) for so-called ocyte-cryopreservation, so that they can delay having children until later in their careers. The process typically costs between $10,000 and $15,000, plus an additional $1,000-a-year to keep the harvested eggs on ice.

The social network is also offering help to men who want to become parents. All staff will be entitled to help with adopting, and a “host of other fertility services”, the company said.

Meanwhile, Apple has said it plans to start paying for egg freezing from January.

Both companies hope that the move will help them to attract more female staff, and retain them for longer by reducing the pressure on them to have children before a particular age.

The offer to help female executives to free their eggs will also help to mark Apple and Facebook out from much of the rest of the technology sector, which is dominated by male executives. 

Facebook’s egg freezing policy is designed to give them more freedom to do just that. However, it is likely to come in for criticism from traditionalists who believe that women should have children when they are still relatively young, rather than trying to fit them around their work. 

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