To coincide with International Men’s Day on 19 November 2018, the Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals (CIPP) conducted research to establish whether there is a ‘gender gap’ when it comes to taking statutory leave.
This research uses findings from a survey representing responses from payroll professionals responsible for 20,827 workers in the UK, as well as looking at various court cases to establish whether there is a gender gap when it comes to taking statutory leave, and to explore the reasons why. Perhaps the reasons are not surprising when you consider that the introduction of maternity leave was not originally to care for the child as often thought, but instead for the mother to recover from childbirth. In Spain it was originally intended to enable breastfeeding, see Pedro Manuel Roca Alvarez v Sesa Espana EET SA on page eight. Whilst Shared Parental Leave moves us on from the original purpose of maternity leave, and fathers now have rights to Paternity Leave and Shared Parental Leave, it is still typically the mother who takes time off to care for children.