Thompson backs campaign for paid miscarriage leave

Thursday December 2nd 2021

Owen-Thompson-Paid-Miscarriage-Leave

Owen Thompson MP, with Angela Crawley MP, pledging his support for the Miscarriage Leave Bill.


Written by Midlothian View Reporter, Luke Jackson

Midlothian MP Owen Thompson has signed up to the campaign to introduce paid leave for families who experience a miscarriage before 24 weeks.

Ahead of the second reading of the Miscarriage Leave Bill on December 3, Mr Thompson pledged his support to ensure parents who experience miscarriage are able to properly grieve their loss.

One in four pregnancies end in miscarriage, however, under current legislation, workers are only entitled to paid bereavement leave following a stillbirth after 24 weeks of pregnancy.

As a result, families across the country are forced to rely on their employer’s good will or sick leave to allow them to grieve their loss.

Introduced by Lanark and Hamilton East MP Angela Crawley, the private members’ bill would see three days of paid leave introduced for parents who experience a miscarriage before 24 weeks if passed.

A petition calling for the UK Government to support the campaign has received 25,000 signatures and MPs from all parties have backed the bill.

Many parents have spoken of the stigma associated with miscarriage and this bill would finally close the gap in support.

Some companies have already gone further than the bill proposes and offer paid leave for between seven and 14 days for people who experience a miscarriage at any stage of the pregnancy.

Other countries, including New Zealand, have written similar provisions into law and in September Australia became the latest country to adopt paid miscarriage leave.

Commenting Mr Thompson said:-

“I will be supporting the Miscarriage Leave Bill as it is only fair that parents are given the time they need to properly grieve their loss.

“I know many parents in Midlothian have experienced miscarriage and too many of them have had to rely on their employer’s good will or take sick leave when it happens.

“Miscarriage is no one’s fault yet the stigma associated can often put parents in a position where they are unable to properly grieve their loss.

“The UK has the opportunity with this bill to close the gap in support for families who experience miscarriage and to finally end the stigma associated with miscarriage.”

The petition can be viewed and signed at paidmiscarriageleave.co.uk.

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