Work and Families Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 6:30 pm on 25th April 2006.

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Photo of Baroness Walmsley Baroness Walmsley Spokesperson in the Lords (Education & Children), Education & Skills 6:30 pm, 25th April 2006

My Lords, we may very well do so. I thank the Minister for his reply, and I thank all other contributors to the debate. Any employer who does not know that his employee is about to become a father is a bit of a disgrace—at least at some level in line management. Therefore, the notice period in a way is academic when it comes to the employer knowing that he or she must plan for some leave. If four weeks is enough notice for a change in the date, it certainly should be enough to allow the employer to plan for the original notice period. The Minister is very insistent on the issue of consistency, and he seems to think that the poor employer has such a small brain that he can keep only one notice period in his head at any one time. In that case, why did the Government not make the notice period for additional paternity leave 15 weeks as well? Why did they choose eight weeks?