12 week father’s leave proposed by Women and Equalities Committee
11 April 2018
According to a report by the Women and Equalities Commission, working dads have been failed by workplace policies and as such it has recommended some key changes.
The Women and Equalities Committee has published a report on fathers in the workplace saying that current policies supporting fathers in the workplace do not deliver what they promise, despite good intentions and this is particularly the case for less well-off fathers.
The report concludes that the right to request flexible working has not created the necessary cultural change and that the government itself admitted to the inquiry that its flagship shared parental leave scheme will not meet its objective for most fathers.
The committee recommends that:
Statutory paternity pay should be paid at 90% of the father’s pay (capped for higher earners) to help ensure that all fathers, regardless of income, can be at home around the time of their child’s birth
The government should consider the costs and benefits of introducing a new policy of 12 weeks’ standalone fathers’ leave in the child’s first year as an alternative to shared parental leave when it reviews the policy this year
The government should legislate immediately to make a reality the Prime Minister’s call for all jobs to be advertised as flexible from day one unless there are solid business reasons not to
The government should harmonise workplace rights for fathers who are agency workers or self-employed with those employed fathers where practical – for example by introducing paternity allowance similar to maternity allowance
Chair of the committee, Maria Miller MP, said:
“…Effective policies around statutory paternity pay, parental leave and flexible working are all vital if we are to meet the needs of families and tackle the gender pay gap."
Further details are available on the UK’s parliamentary website.