FI joins call for new deal for dads in election manifestos

26 April 2017

The Fatherhood Institute has joined a coalition of charities and trade unions, to call on the UK’s political parties to include policies aimed at promoting involved fatherhood in their election manifestos.

The FI is part of the Families and Work Group – an informal coalition of charities and trade unions including Working Families, the Child Poverty Action Group, the Fawcett Society and Unite – who work together to collaboratively develop policy thinking and responses.

In the run-up to the June 8 election we are calling for:

Meaningful flexibility and job security in the labour market, including jobs designed and recruited flexibly as the norm rather than the exception; and a level playing field on parental rights between those classified as ‘workers’,  ‘employees’ and ‘self-employed’.

Better support for fathers in the workplace, including paternity leave paid at 90% of salary (the same as maternity pay), capped for higher earners;  and three months’ paternal leave paid at 90% salary (capped) for 4 weeks and thereafter at the same level as shared parental leave. Both paternity and paternal leave should be an individual, ‘day one’, non-transferable right for fathers, based on their employment record: in other words, men should be eligible immediately on joining an employer (at the moment they must have been employed for six months before claiming paternity leave). The ‘daddy months’ (paternal leave) would need to be taken in the baby’s first year.

More support for working mothers and fathers of disabled children, including a statutory right to adjustment leave, allowing parents and carers to make arrangements to deal with a new family situation or diagnosis, without leaving the labour market.

Proper employment protection for new and expectant mothers, including the abolition of unfair employment tribunal fees.

Access to childcare that makes every family better off working, including a simple funding system that makes sure that parents only pay what they can afford for childcare and are always better off working once they have paid for childcare.

For more details see the Working Families website.

* New EU proposals would, if passed by MEPs and member governments, give new dads 10 days’ paternity leave and four months’ parental leave (not transferable to mothers, and to be taken before the child’s 12th birthday) – all paid at the equivalent of sick pay rates. Read our blog about how this might impact UK parenting leave here.

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