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New parents in Jersey could get a year off work under new plans

Credit: Joe Giddens/PA Archive/PA Images

New parents in Jersey could soon be entitled to 1 year off to look after their children, with 6 weeks full pay

The Minister for Social Security has lodged a draft law to extend family-friendly rights.

If amendments to the Employment Law are passed, it could also include time off work to attend appointments for adoptive and surrogate parents.

Mothers will also have more breastfeeding rights such as breaks and better workplace facilities to feed their child.

The aim of the draft law is to equalise the rights of all parents.

Those looking to take a year off to look after their child would be able to do so within 4 blocks of no less than two weeks each, over three years.

It is hoped this will allow parents to take leave when it suits the needs of their family.

The Social Security Minister has said the extension of employment rights is both progressive and inclusive.

We want to improve the situation for parents in the workplace, giving families more choice and flexibility to help meet their work and family responsibilities. The changes we are proposing will also encourage gender balance in childcare roles.

– Deputy Judy Martin, Minister for Social Security

The proposed changes follows a consultation with employers and employees, undertaken by the Employment Forum in 2017.

Research a year before from the Jersey Lifestyle and Opinions Survey, found that two-thirds of men had not taken any parental leave and 92 percent wanted more time off with their newborns.

It is hoped the new law will come into force in September, with the aim of giving businesses enough time to prepare for the changes.

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