EP Passes Draft Legislation to Increase Maternity Leave

Bulgaria in EU | February 24, 2010, Wednesday // 11:51|  views

Photo by BGNES

Draft legislation has been passed by a committee of the European Parliament to extend maternity leave across Europe to 20 weeks on full pay.

Current European rules give pregnant women 14 weeks leave fully paid.

The 20-week proposals will now go before the full European Parliament in early March.

There are concerns that employers could discriminate against women of a child-bearing age if the rules are passed.

Bulgaria has the longest maternity leave in the European Union – from a total 315 days mothers currently receive 90% of their salaries for 135 days and for the rest of the time – social insurances.

Some countries have opposed the move with the UK's Employment Relations Minister Lord Young expressed his doubts about the proposals.

"A substantial increase in maternity leave paid at full or near-full pay risks undermining this delicate balance at a time when economies across the EU can least afford it," he said.

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Tags: maternity leave, European parliament


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