The Liberal Democrats will introduce an additional month of paid parental leave for fathers to encourage greater sharing of parental responsibilities.
The policy will build on our achievement of introducing Shared Parental Leave which ensured new parents could make decisions which work best for their family.
Many fathers would prefer to spend more time with their children in the period after they are born. The Liberal Democrats want to make that a real possibility giving opportunities for new fathers to spend quality time with their newborn children.
Jo Swinson, who introduced the original Shared Parental Leave in the Coalition Government, said:
“The Liberal Democrat introduction of Shared Parental Leave was a massive step towards more equal parenting, and recognising the vital role that fathers play. Parents across the UK have already benefitted from greater flexibility and freedom in how they share the care for their new baby.
“But more needs to be done in order to encourage men to take leave when they become a dad, to bond with their child during the early weeks and months of their life. Research shows that fathers being more involved in their children's lives is good for children's development and good for the health and happiness of the whole family.
“That is why the Liberal Democrats want to give dads across the country the chance to spend more time with their children.
“A vote for the Liberal Democrats is a vote to change the direction of this country. If you want an open, tolerant and united Britain, this is your chance.”
Tom Brake said:
“Creating a fair system for parents everywhere not only benefits new mums and dads but also helps our business sector.
“Having a workforce that is both more flexible and more motivated will benefit UK businesses greatly.
“It is the Liberal Democrats who are standing up for fairness and flexibility for parents. Theresa May has never cared.”
Notes for editors:
Shared Parental Leave, introduced by the Liberal Democrats in the Coalition Government is a transformational policy that allows parents, instead of the Government to make the choice about how they share looking after their children.
International evidence suggests that fathers’ usage of parental leave is higher under programmes that offer fathers targeted or reserved leave schemes as opposed to just making shared leave available to the father.