The government is considering whether to introduce a new leave and pay entitlement for parents of babies that require neonatal care after birth. They hope that a new entitlement would support parents to balance employment with the challenges brought by having a baby in neonatal care.
The consultation considers whether Neonatal Leave and Pay should be a new, additional statutory right, on top of Maternity, Paternity and Shared Parental leave and pay. It also explores questions of who should be eligible to the new entitlement, what qualifying conditions should be in place, and the length of the entitlement.
Many businesses offer enhanced family-related leave and pay packages, with some already voluntarily introducing neonatal leave and pay for parents with premature babies. Businesses want to create an inclusive working environment, so that employees are able to give their best at work. That is why the CBI supports giving eligible employees a new, additional entitlement to Neonatal Leave and Pay.
- Supports the government’s intention to introduce a period of leave and pay with the clear purpose of compensating parents for the time they have spent in neonatal care
- Believes that eligibility should be given to individuals who have the main responsibility for caring for the child, as is the case for Shared Parental Leave
- Agrees with the government that the potential length of Neonatal Leave and Pay should be capped at a maximum number of weeks, so that businesses can plan their operations
- Supports employees having a day-one right to neonatal leave, and that neonatal pay should mirror existing family-related statutory payments
- Believes that employees should give their employer reasonable notice of both their need to take neonatal leave and of their return to work
- Believes that parents taking neonatal leave should have equivalent protections to parents that take parental, SPL or maternity leave.
For more information about our lobbying on this area, or to read the CBI’s full response, please contact Katie Miller