Shared Parental Leave

Fewer than one in 1,000 employees have taken up shared parental leave (SPL) its inception two years ago, new research has found. The study discovered that just 54 of more than 56,000 people surveyed had taken up SPL.

SPL was launched as a family-friendly policy, designed to help working dads improve their work-life balance, spend more time in a ‘hands on’ role raising their family and lift the load from their partners, but the survey suggests that there is either little appetite for it, little knowledge about it – or both. SPL was designed to enable eligible mothers, fathers, partners and adopters to share statutory leave and pay after their child is born or adopted. Eligible workers can choose how they allocate SPL between them, and whether they wish to take the leave separately or simultaneously.

This is not the first time that the lack of appetite for SPL has been brought to the fore. Past research revealed that just 5% of the new fathers surveyed opted to use SPL.

The December 2016 study also found that just one-fifth of the 1,050 senior HR professionals surveyed had received requests from male employees to take up SPL.

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