Scottish Liberal Democrats have today called on the UK Government to expand shared parental leave. The call comes as a new report from the equality watchdog suggests that men should be given more paternity leave to help close the gender pay gap.
A new report from the Equality and Human Rights Commission says the proposal would help men and women to more equally share childcare responsibilities and reduce the ‘motherhood penalty’ many women face after having children.
Scottish Liberal Democrat equalities spokesperson Caron Lindsay said:
“In government, Jo Swinson and the Liberal Democrats were proud to introduce shared parental leave and increase free childcare but there are still gaps in the system.
“Expanding shared parental leave with an additional ‘use it or lose it’ month to encourage fathers to take time off with their newborn would be good for both parents and children. The first few weeks are so important for the bonding process and government can help facilitate this.
“We would also make paternity and shared parental leave a ‘day one’ right and encourage employers to provide more flexible working with a presumption that work is flexible unless there is a clear business reason it cannot be.”