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Parental Bereavement (Pay and Leave) Bill 19/07/2017 Employed parents who have lost a child will for the first time get statutory paid leave to grieve under a proposed new law

Parental Bereavement (Pay and Leave) Bill

Employed parents who have lost a child will for the first time get statutory paid leave to grieve under a proposed new law being supported by the Government and introduced to Parliament today (19th July).

Currently, under the Employment Rights Act, employees have a day-one right to take a ‘reasonable’ amount of unpaid time off work to deal with an emergency involving a dependant, including making arrangements following the death of a dependant. What is ‘reasonable’ depends on the circumstances but in practice the length of time off will be agreed between the employer and their employee.

However, there is no specific legal requirement for employers to provide paid leave for grieving parents, and while the Government expects employers to be compassionate and flexible at such a difficult time, not all employers will respond in this way. This can have a devastating impact on parents, especially those who need time away to grieve.

The Parental Bereavement (Pay and Leave) Bill therefore seeks to ensure grieving parents in employment receive paid leave to grieve away from the workplace.

“This is such an important Bill for parents going through the most terrible of times,” said Bill sponsor, Kevin Hollinrake MP. “There is little any of us can do to help, but at least we can make sure that every employer will give them time to grieve.”

The Bill is expected to have its second reading in the autumn.

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