Government commitment to extend paid parents leave to begin next month

New law will increase paid leave from two weeks to five weeks

Minister for Children Roderic O’Gorman is hopeful the bill will pass all stages of the Oireachtas by the end of March, allowing it to be signed into law during April. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Minister for Children Roderic O’Gorman is hopeful the bill will pass all stages of the Oireachtas by the end of March, allowing it to be signed into law during April. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

 

A Government commitment to extend paid parents leave from two weeks to five weeks will become operational next month.

Minister for Children Roderic O’Gorman will seek approval at the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday for the Family Leave Bill 2021.

The new law also extends the period when leave can be taken to two years from the child’s birth, effective from November 2019. In the case of adopted children, it is two years from date of placement.

If Ministers give it the green light on Tuesday, it will be introduced in the Seanad on Friday. Mr O’Gorman is hopeful that it will pass all stages of the Oireachtas by the end of March, allowing it to be signed into law during April.

The Bill contains provision to allow male same-sex couples of avail of adoptive leave. This was to correct an anomaly in the legislation, which was not updated after the marriage equality referendum.

In relation to illegal birth registrations, Mr O’Gorman will also bring a memo to Cabinet seeking approval for publication of the sampling review, which was initiated by Katherine Zappone following the discovery of illegal birth registrations at St Patricks Guild.