Over the last two years, I have been avidly campaigning for paid leave to be brought to those who experience a miscarriage. One in four pregnancies end in miscarriage and all too often, the experience is kept behind closed doors. As part of the campaign, I have met with numerous stakeholders to help raise awareness around baby and pregnancy loss. We have begun to see progressive change across sectors, with organisations like ASOS and Monzo implementing their own miscarriage leave policies.
However, this is not enough. Currently, UK law only allows parents affected by baby loss to take time off to grieve, if their loss happens after 24 weeks of pregnancy. Parents who experience pregnancy loss before 24 weeks are therefore expected to return to work immediately or take unsuitable forms of time off like flexible leave or sick leave to grieve the loss of their baby.
This is why I have been campaigning to bring three days of paid leave to parents affected by miscarriage before 24 weeks of pregnancy. In July 2022, I brought forward a private members bill on miscarriage leave to the House of Commons which was successfully voted through at first reading. Unfortunately, the bill did not have the chance to be read a second time in December 2022 and has now been moved to March 2023.
While the UK Government have so far not committed to bringing in their own miscarriage leave bill, I hope they reconsider their position and ease the silent suffering of so many.
To read more about the miscarriage leave campaign, please click here.