I used to be a fan and a supporter of Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s revolutionary paid parental leave scheme.
My reasons were pretty simple. I believed that parental leave should be treated the same way as any other type of leave such as sick leave or annual leave. That means it should be at the full wage of whoever took it.
Yes, that means some people would receive more during their maternity leave than others. But that happens already. Westpac Bank’s Gail Kelly earned a lot more when she was home with the flu than you do. Even if you have the same flu. Same with Christmas holidays.
Not everyone’s time is worth the same amount. Fact.
It’s also true that all our lives are indexed to our incomes. Your rent or your mortgage, all your living expenses are based on what you earn. Assuming we want one parent to be able to stay home with the baby in those early weeks and months of life (which is the purpose of any PPL), a workable scheme needs to take that into account.
Tony Abbott: Popular with the babies.