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Clegg parental leave shake-up

Parents will be able to share up to a year's leave to look after their newborn children under "radical" reforms announced by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg today.

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Campaigners welcome Clegg's parental leave reform

We welcome any proposals to allow genuine shared parenting, which is good for the baby, mother and father.

It is important that families are allowed to decide how to share parenting according to individual need and that fathers can play a full part in bringing up a family.

Our worry is that there will be a low take-up because the Government is not offering fathers the additional four weeks of paternity leave which was originally proposed."

– Rosalind Bragg, director of Maternity Action

The shared leave proposals are a welcome step towards greater equality at work and at home.

Families will benefit from more choice about which parent stays at home to care for a new baby.

While few low-income couples will be able to afford both parents taking time off at once, the ability to transfer leave to the father will be particularly welcomed by couples where the mother is the higher earner and it makes financial sense for her to return and the father to take over the care.

– Sarah Jackson, chief executive of Working Families

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