Encouraging family friendly working

November 19, 2014 12:01 AM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

Liberal Democrat leader and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg is calling on businesses to revolutionise what they are doing to support family friendly working.

Nick's call for action follows the results of a survey by Mumsnet which reveals that 39 per cent of dads have had to use their paid annual leave just to take time off after the birth of a child.

The survey also finds that 80 per cent of parents said they would have preferred for dads to take a longer period of paternity leave.

In October, Nick urged private companies to follow the lead of the public sector in its plans to give equal paternity pay to all civil servants so that working fathers can enjoy the same kinds of benefits as mothers when they take parental leave.

Responding to Nick's suggestion, Deloitte, PwC and Shell have today (19 November) announced that they will be offering enhanced paternity packages to all their employees.

Nick said:

"I'm delighted that Deloitte, PWC and Shell are taking positive steps in modernising the workplace by providing flexible working arrangements for hardworking parents.

"It is bizarre that even in the 21st Century, hundreds and thousands of employees are still restricted by Edwardian rules when it comes to juggling their work and family lives.

"We need a modern Britain that works for modern families, not against them. I've fought hard in Government to bring about that change whether it's through the introduction of flexible working, free childcare, shared parental leave or equalising paternity pay so that men can spend more time with their newborn child without being penalised financially.

"So, I'm calling on employers to set an example when it comes to offering flexible working arrangements so that working parents are empowered to make their own decisions in their own time. We know this boosts productivity, loyalty and retention of staff in the workplace so this is not just about common sense it makes financial sense too."

Nick is hosting an event with the CBI, Mumsnet and businesses to discuss how employers can boost their family friendly offers and retain talented parents in the workforce.