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Maternity leave not just for women!



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MEDIA RELEASE

Senator Sue Boyce Liberal - Queensland

Electorate Office: Level 9, 301 Coronation Drive, Milton, Qld

Telephone: (07) 3510 3100 Facsimile: (07) 3510 3111

MEDIA RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 10 APRIL 2008

Maternity leave not just for women!

“Maternity leave needs to be considered a family issue and not solely a women’s issue,” according to Senator Sue Boyce.

Speaking at a boardroom lunch today, Senator Boyce, Liberal Senator for Queensland, said the more we speak about maternity leave as though it’s a women only issue, the more employers will be reluctant to hire young women.

“The proposal for the government to pay maternity leave put forward co-jointly by the ACTU, HREOC and the Australian Industry Group this week is welcome, however slightly misguided,” Senator Boyce said.

“Both parents need to make decisions on parenting that suit their family circumstances, and whilst the child bearing is done by the woman, child rearing must be seen as a joint responsibility.

“If we continue to put the focus on women and child rearing, and making it solely their responsibility, we continue to suggest that women are somehow ‘difficult’ to employ and employers are less likely to consider hiring young women.

“The initiative put forward this week is long overdue, and I do believe that paid leave to have a child is an important workplace reform that needs to be implemented, but we need to make sure that it is parental leave we actually want so that both parents have an equal responsibility.”

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Media contact: Yasmin Khan on 0419 025 510 or (07) 3510 3100