Parliament Street a Signatory on Letter to The Guardian Calling for MPs to Have Six Months’ Parental Leave

 Wednesday 26th June 2019

Today, Patrick Sullivan, C.E.O. and Chairman of Parliament Street, on behalf of the entire organisation, signed an open letter to The Guardian calling for MPs to have six months’ parental leave without delay.

Parliament Street signed the letter as part of an alliance of charities and campaigners who believe the current process, in relation to, parental and adoption leave, discriminates against women and acts as a deterrent to gender equality within Westminster.



The text of the letter is below:


We write as an alliance of charities and campaigners to express our support for the development of a transparent procedure and budget that would allow all MPs to have access to six months’ parental and adoption leave. We therefore call on the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) to take the lead on this matter and consult on bringing in new measures without delay.

There has been cross-party support for this campaign, including support from Theresa May, Jeremy Hunt, Anna Soubry, Sajid Javid, Jo Swinson, Caroline Lucas and Valerie Vaz.

We believe the current process discriminates against women and acts as a deterrent to gender equality within Westminster. We also believe it sends a negative signal about how pregnant women and new mothers should be treated when they are working. With 54,000 women a year being pushed out of their jobs due to pregnancy and maternity discrimination it is important that Westminster sets the gold standard in how it treats new mothers.

This change in policy is important for MPs and the diversity of the parliamentary workforce, but it is also important for all UK citizens; firstly because we need to know that constituents will be in receipt of proper representation but also because, by legislating for parental leave for MPs, the government will send a strong signal to employers that parents who work are valued.


The other signatories are:


Joeli Brearley Pregnant Then Screwed
Olga Fitzroy Parental Pay Equality 
Sam Smethers Fawcett Society 
Eve Holt Happen Together
Rachel Elgy EqualiTeach
Mandy Garner Working Mums 
Mandu Reid Women’s Equality Party 
Dr Mary-Ann Stephenson Women’s Budget Group 
Joe Levenson Young Women’s Trust, 
Adrienne Burgess CEO, Fatherhood Institute
Dave Devenney Director, Fatherhood Network Scotland 
Olivia Bailey Chair, Labour Women’s Network 
Lee Chalmers The Parliament Project
Laura Christer Westend Women and Girls
Helen Pankhurst The Centenary Action Group
Shereen Fisher Chief executive, The Breastfeeding Network
Catherine Anderson Jo Cox Foundation
Fenella Dawnay Artichoke 
Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu Lawyer and women’s rights activist
Emma Ritch Engender
Helene Reardon Bond OBE
Amelia Womack The Green party 
Dr Tessa Chynoweth The Pankhurst Trust 
Flo Clucas Chair, Liberal Democrat Women
Ella Robertson Conservative Young Women
Binita Mehta-Palmer Modern Britain 
Cerys Furlong Chwarae Teg

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