Miscarriage leave comes to Northern Ireland

Lanark and Hamilton East MP Angela Crawley has welcomed news that Northern Ireland is set to become the first in Europe to introduce paid miscarriage leave before 24 weeks.

Legislation passed ths week by the Northern Ireland Assembly will give parents a statutory right to paid leave in the event of miscarriage, stillbirth or the loss of a child.

MLAs at Stormont unanimously voted to approve the Parental Bereavement (Leave and Pay) Bill.

Following amendments, the bill will go a step further than the Parental Bereavement (Leave and Pay) Act 2018 to ensure all parents are given an opportunity to properly grieve.

SNP MP Angela Crawley has been campaigning to introduce paid leave for parents who experience miscarriage before 24 weeks at Westminster.

Commenting, Lanark and Hamilton East MP Angela Crawley said:

“This week, Northern Ireland has taken the decision to lead the way in Europe by granting bereaved parents the right to paid leave and the right to grieve properly regardless of when their loss occurs.

“Parents in Northern Ireland who experience miscarriage will not be subject to the arbitrary 24 week cut off which means parents in the rest of the UK are forced to rely on sick leave or their employer’s good will to grieve their loss.

“Despite a clear consensus at Westminster and the support of almost 40,000 members of the public, the UK Government has so far failed to back my private members’ bill which would close this gap in support for bereaved parents.

“However, parents in Scotland shouldn’t have to wait for Westminster to act. If the UK government won’t do the right thing then it should devolve the powers to the Scottish Parliament so we can. Anybody that suffers a miscarriage deserves that support.”