17 June 2011

20 weeks of maternity leave on full pay is still being proposed by European Ministers but the UK are strongly opposed as the measures will be too costly for employers.

The proposals to amend the Pregnant Workers Directive were put forward in October 2010. The UK government has recently published a consultation – Modern Workplaces - which looks at introducing a flexible parental leave that is tailored to improve and suit the needs of the UK. (The CIPP will be publishing an important survey on this shortly).

Chris Grayling, the Employment Relations Minister said that the proposals that MEPs put forward are socially regressive in that those that are earning the most will benefit the most.

Under the European Parliament’s proposal, a woman earning £10,000 p.a. would only get 20 per cent more maternity pay, whereas a woman earning £60,000 p.a. would receive 146 per cent more.

Read the full press release from the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills