A new report by The Australian Institute show there are significant benefits for working parents and the economy from paid maternity leave and has led to renewed calls from the ACTU for the Federal Government to include the scheme in the May Federal Budget.

The report, Long Overdue: the Macroeconomic benefits of Pail Parental Maternity Leave, shows that a paid maternity leave scheme would create 9000 jobs, and cut the net cost of the scheme by $225 million.

ACTU President Sharan Burrow said the report is further evidence that paid maternity leave must be in the next Federal Budget.

“Jobs are being lost and families are facing financial uncertainty. What this report shows is that paid maternity leave would help to remove that uncertainty by providing financial assistance to families in a way that would also benefit the Australian economy as a whole.”

“Paid maternity leave will provide highly positive outcomes to Australian families and the economy as a whole, that’s what this report shows.”

Ms Burrow also pointed to the “highly positive social and economic return for relatively small net investment, as has been outlined in the recent Productivity Commission report.”

“What this report from the Australian Institute indicates is that there are benefits to the entire Australian community through a national paid maternity leave scheme.”

“These highly positive outcomes can only be achieved if the Government includes a national  paid maternity leave scheme in its forthcoming budget,” Ms Burrow said,

“Paid maternity leave will provide a solid foundation for economic growth by ensuring women retain a secure connection to the workforce while being able to take time out to have a baby.”

For more information please call Adrian Dodd on 0401 726 476.