In her latest Mamamia column, Shadow Foreign Affairs Minister Tanya Plibersek gives us the low-down on the Government’s proposed paid parental leave cuts.
Today I got kicked out of question time for telling the truth. Again.
But the extra spending comes with two big catches: $3.5 billion of childcare spending will be paid for by $5.5 billion of cuts to Family Tax Benefits and $1 billion of cuts to Paid Parental Leave. If Tony Abbott gets his way 1.5 million families will have their family tax benefits cut, and 80,000 new mums each year risk losing some or all of their Paid Parental Leave.
At the moment, eligible working mums get 18 weeks Parental Leave paid at the minimum wage. That’s the scheme Labor introduced when we were in Government.
But some mums do better because their employers give them additional weeks of paid leave.
Woolworths workers get an additional eight weeks leave. Victorian nurses get an additional 10 weeks leave. Myer workers get six weeks, and McDonald’s workers get eight weeks, for example.
This extra time is good for mothers and babies. It gives mums extra time to recover from birth, to bond with their babies and to establish breastfeeding. Healthy mothers and healthy babies are good for our country.
Now the Abbott Government is proposing that if your employer gives you parental leave, you will lose government funded leave to the same value. For any additional leave you get from your employer, you will lose the same amount of paid leave from the government.
The government is trying to portray mums who want to spend more time with their babies as rorters and fraudsters.