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MP threatens legal action over paid maternity leave for ministers

MP threatens legal action over paid maternity leave for ministers

MP threatens legal action over paid maternity leave for ministers

Labour’s Stella Creasy is threatening legal action against the government if they do not implement measures to include all MPs in maternity cover plans.

The government is already attempting to change the law to make senior ministers eligible for paid maternity leave.

The move was prompted by Attorney General Suella Braverman, who is due to give birth next month.

Under the planned changes, she and other cabinet ministers will be allowed to take six months’ leave on full ministerial pay.

The salary costs for a temporary replacement will be covered.

But Creasy, who is currently pregnant with her second child, says the change should not just apply to those at the top.

According to a report by the BBC, backbench MPs are permitted to take maternity leave, but their duties are not entirely covered during their absence.

Following a long battle with authorities, Stella Creasy became the first MP to be given locum maternity leave cover in 2019.

She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme:

“I think every woman should be able to have paid maternity cover, proper cover – it’s not just about being paid, it’s that somebody else will be doing that job – so Suella Braverman will be able to take proper leave with her child.

“My concern is that the message Parliament sends if we only offer that to women at the top is that somehow maternity leave is a benefit like a company car rather than something that every woman should have.

“I am very prepared to go to court over this, because it is a form of direct discrimination… as a backbencher, none of these provisions will apply to myself, it’s still very unclear what I can tell my constituents they can get in terms of cover.

“Thousands of pregnant women are facing risks in the workplace, including the risk of the loss of their job. The message that we’re sending is that we treat maternity leave like a benefit, like a company car.”

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