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Call for maternity rights leaflet

15 July, 2016

Call for maternity rights leaflet

Midwives should provide pregnant women with a document outlining their employment rights, it was stated.

The call came yesterday (14 July) at a parliamentary debate in Westminster Hall covering pregnancy discrimination.

A number of MPs voiced support for the government to work with midwives in providing a hard copy of the information at the first antenatal appointment.  

Ruth Cadbury, Labour MP for Brentford and Isleworth, was among those to speak out in favour of the idea.

It was outlined in a parliamentary briefing for MPs, which was prepared by the charity Maternity Action, which aims to improve the health and wellbeing of pregnant women, partners and young children.

The briefing states: ‘All women should be given a hard copy leaflet at their first antenatal appointment, which briefly outlines their maternity rights at work and signposts to key sources of information and advice.

‘The leaflet should include a tear-off sheet for women to give to their employers which similarly lists key legal obligations and signposts to key sources of information and advice.’

The document also calls on employers to ‘evaluate their own internal practices by examining their retention rates for pregnant women’.

Angela Rayner, shadow secretary of state for education, women and equalities, said: ‘We cannot be silent, we must take action for the 5400 women a year who lose their jobs.’

To watch the archived footage of the debate on parliamentlive.tv, click here. To read Maternity Action’s parliamentary briefing, click here.

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