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More redundancy protection for new parents returning to work

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New mothers will get better protection against redundancy after they return to work, under new government proposals.

The new measures would extend redundancy protection to six months from the date the new parent – including fathers who have taken shared parental leave – returns to work.

Women on maternity leave currently receive additional protection in redundancy situations

Under the proposals, a mother could receive up to two years of legal protection against redundancy when pregnancy and maternity leave is taken into account

The move comes in response to a government consultation which found that new parents continue to face unfair discrimination.

Research estimates that up to 54,000 women a year felt they had to leave their jobs due to pregnancy or maternity discrimination, which is illegal.

The government has already proposed new leave entitlements for parents of sick and premature babies and  to ensure large businesses are more transparent on their policies for parental leave and pay and flexible working.

Kelly Tolhurst, Business Minister said: “There is no place for discrimination against new parents in the modern workplace. It is unacceptable that new parents continue to feel they are treated unfairly and the government is determined to put an end to this.

“The reforms announced today will better protect new parents, giving them the peace of mind to manage the return to work while also caring for a new child.”


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