Equal parental leave pay for Civil Service employees

Both male and female Civil Service employees will be entitled to full parental pay and support from April 2015, the deputy prime minister is to announce this week.

The change means that fathers will now be able to benefit from enhanced pay for shared parental leave – if both parents decide to divide the time up – as mothers currently do.

In a speech this week, Nick Clegg will say: “For me, it’s critical that people who choose to work in the public sector know that they’re working in modern, progressive workplaces.

“I pushed for the introduction of shared parental leave in the first place because I fundamentally believe it’s time for us to sweep away the outdated regulations and prejudices which still limit the choices of too many people in this country.”

It was recently announced in the Cabinet Office’s Talent Action Plan: Removing the barriers to success that the Civil Service will be an exemplar of the new entitlement to Shared

Parental Leave, which allows working parents to decide how they share time off work after their child is born or adopted. “We will pay Shared Parental Leave at the same occupational rate as maternity leave across the whole Civil Service,” it was noted.

Following a previous announcement by the deputy prime minister last year, new parents will have the choice over how they split their statutory entitlement from April. However, there will be no onus on employers offering occupational maternity schemes above and beyond that to do so on an equal basis.

“I’ve been pushing hard for radical reforms to the way in which the civil service pays and supports its staff after their children are born,” Clegg will say. “So, I’m pleased to confirm that from April 2015 the Civil Service will be offering equal parental pay and support to all its employees – male and female.”

A spokesman for the Public and Commercial Services Union said: "Any move to make the Civil Service a more modern employer, that takes equality seriously, would be welcome. But Clegg's government has set the civil service back years by cutting pay, pensions, redundancy terms and other working conditions, as well making it a far more hostile environment for trade unions. It is hypocritical to talk about 'modern, progressive workplaces' in this context. There are also huge inequalities that remain over pay in the civil service, between men and women and between departments, and these must be tackled as well."

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