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Parental Leave

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy written question – answered on 10th February 2020.

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Photo of Rachel Reeves Rachel Reeves Chair, Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when she plans to publish the outcome of the Neonatal Leave and Pay consultation, which closed on 29 November 2019.

Photo of Rachel Reeves Rachel Reeves Chair, Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when neonatal leave and pay will be available to parents with a baby receiving neonatal care.

Photo of Rachel Reeves Rachel Reeves Chair, Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate her Department has made of the cost per annum to the public purse of introducing for parents of premature babies an entitlement to (a) two weeks of neonatal leave and pay and (b) an additional week of neonatal leave and pay for each week a baby is in neonatal care paid at the statutory maternity pay rate.

Photo of Rachel Reeves Rachel Reeves Chair, Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate her Department has made of the cost per annum to the private sector of introducing for parents of premature babies an entitlement to (a) two weeks of neonatal leave and pay and (b) an additional week of neonatal leave and pay for each week a baby is in neonatal care.

Photo of Kelly Tolhurst Kelly Tolhurst Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)

This Government is determined to make Britain the best place in the world to work. As announced in the Queens’ Speech, we will be bringing forward an Employment Rights Bill to deliver the greatest reform of workers’ rights in over 20 years. This will include measures to allow parents of children who have been in neonatal care for a prolonged stay to take additional paid leave (subject to qualifying criteria).

This will take forward the proposals which the Government consulted on from July to October last year. The consultation outlined our estimates of the cost of this policy to business and to the Exchequer. This covered a range of options for how many weeks leave and pay the entitlement would cover, as well as the impact of a qualifying ‘minimum stay’ in neonatal care. The consultation document is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/good-work-plan-proposals-to-support-families with provisional costings on p44. The Government will publish a full impact assessment when the Bill is introduced in Parliament.

We look forward to setting out our plans soon with the publication of the Government Response.

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