FROM January 1, 2011, eligible families with newborn babies in Flynn will have access to Australia’s first Paid Parental Leave scheme.
Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, Jenny Macklin, and Labor member for Flynn, Chris Trevor, visited Stepping Stones Child Care Centre in Gladstone on Monday to explain the scheme.
Local families who have a baby on or after January 1 next year will receive up to 18 weeks parental leave pay, at the National Minimum Wage (currently $570 per week before tax).
“Australian families have been waiting decades for a Paid Parental Leave scheme,” Jenny Macklin said.
“For 12 years, the Liberal-National Coalition refused to deliver Paid Parental Leave.
“Tony Abbott previously declared that Australian families would get a national Paid Parental Leave scheme ‘over this Government’s dead body’, referring to the former Coalition Government.
“Now Mr Abbott wants to hit business with a $10.8 billion tax on companies like Coles and Woolworths, which will increase cost of living pressures on Australian families.
The ALP’s Paid Parental Leave scheme will support seasonal, contract, self-employed, casual, part-time and full-time workers who work a minimum of one day a week for 10 out of the 13 months before the birth of their baby.
Ms Macklin said paid parental leave could be shared between both parents, so families can decide how best to manage their work and family responsibilities.
“For many parents, financial pressures mean they have to go back to work earlier than they want to. Our scheme will help parents to stay at home longer with their baby,” Ms Macklin said.
Mr Trevor said the Paid Parental Leave scheme would make a big difference for local families planning to have a baby.
“Families are doing it tough and many are struggling with cost of living pressures,” Mr Trevor said.
“Federal Labor’s scheme will also support local jobs by helping local employers hold on to valued staff members.
“Our scheme helps local employers provide family-friendly workplace conditions.”
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.