Media release

June 18, 2010

Paid parental leave scheme falls short of providing equity for all mums

The paid parental leave scheme which passed through Federal Parliament last night provides greater support for working mothers wanting to bond with new-born children but falls a long way short in terms of providing equity for all new mums, the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) said today.

ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said it is wrong for women who stay home to care for their children to be financially penalised by inequitable government payments to the tune of thousands of dollars.

“The Government shouldn’t be disadvantaging one group of mothers as a consequence of helping another group of mothers,” Mr Wallace said.

“Much of the debate about the paid parental scheme to date seems to have focused primarily on economic considerations, but it is important that we also consider the social impacts of the legislation.

“A non-discriminatory payment to all new mothers would value all women equally and provide important assistance to both working mothers and those working in the home.”