Paid parental leave extended

On: 1 December 2017

The Parental Leave and Employment Protection Amendment Bill has passed its third reading in parliament.

The new law will increase the duration of parental leave payments over three years and two stages:

  • an increase from 18 to 22 weeks from 1 July 2018
  • a further increase to 26 weeks from 1 July 2020.

The extension aims to support working families with newborns and young children and help reduce financial stress. It will allow more time for bonding with their children for those carers who are not in a position to take additional unpaid leave. It will also help facilitate exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months (as recommended by the World Health Organisation).

The changes also extend the Keeping in Touch days from 40 to 52 hours from 1 July 2018, and to 64 hours from 1 July 2020. 

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