New hope for parents of premature babies as parental leave could be set to extend

A Bill proposing to make the statutory parental leave more flexible for parents whose babies are born prematurely or are very sick has passed its first reading.

The Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Premature and Sick Babies, David Linden MP, explained that “many parents who face the brutal choice of having to return to work whilst their child is still in hospital.”

He highlighted the fact that in some cases a child might be born very prematurely and could “spend weeks on neonatal intensive care units”. In such cases, parental leave, particularly paternal leave, is often grossly inadequate

“Existing UK employment legislation takes no account of the fact that some babies will spend much longer in hospital after being born, especially if they’re born premature or sick,” he said.

The MP for Glasgow East spoke from personal experience in regard to his own children, both of whom were born prematurely and spent weeks in intensive care. The fact that parental leave was so limited forced him back to work whilst his child was still in the hospital.

This simple but important initiative did not receive any opposition and will help, if it becomes law, relieve pressure on parents who have a very sick or premature baby.

Clare McCarthy of Right To Life UK said:

“Ten Minute Rule Bills rarely become law, so we are calling on the Government to commit to introducing new legislation that will ensure that these proposals become law.

“This small change in the law would provide parents with the flexibility that would ensure they are able to care for their child without the added pressure of potentially losing their job.

Abortion giant provided prostitutes for its staff – funded by the British taxpayer

International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), one of the world’s largest abortion providers, oversaw the hiring of prostitutes for staff, donors and guests attending official functions, according to allegations reported in the Daily Mail.

Lucien Kouakou, the Africa regional director who was dismissed over the allegations, has made claimed that IPPF offered sexual ‘gifts’ to guests at African events for several years.

In an email sent to an official at the IPPF’s London headquarters responding to the threat of dismissal, Mr Kouakou said that under a previous regime ‘there was promoting of prostitution within the organisation, where prostitutes would be organised for IPPF staff, donors and partners during functions’.

He repeated the charges in Kenyan court documents filed in February, which say that under a previous leadership ‘the region solicited the services of prostitutes for guests during official functions of the organisation’.

The court documents add: ‘Young volunteers within the region were being offered to invitee guests during African gatherings and functions for sex or sexual pleasure.’

Despite the fact that this scandal has been going on for months, the Department for International Development (DfID) continues to use British taxpayer money to fund the abortion provider overseas.

In January of this year, DfID gave IPPF £132 million in funding for a two-year programme. In April, Penny Modaunt MP, as International Development Secretary, pledged a further £42 million to IPPF (alongside Marie Stopes International) to look at the “neglected issue” of safe abortion in developing countries.

Right to Life spokesperson Clare McCarthy said:

“After the scandal with Oxfam, the public were strongly assured that UK aid money would not go to any organisation that did not meet the ‘high standards’ of safeguarding and protection required. However, it seems an exception has been made for this giant abortion provider, allowing UK aid money to be pumped into funding abortions, whatever the cost and with little scrutiny.”

“The Department for International Development are apparently so committed to promoting abortion overseas using taxpayer money, that they are willing to continue funding an organisation mired in sexual scandal.”

Press comment: Parental Leave (Premature and Sick Babies) Bill

David Linden MP is the Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Premature and Sick Babies. He presented his Ten Minute Rule Bill on Parental Leave (Premature and Sick Babies) on Wednesday, 12 June 2019.

Clare McCarthy, spokesperson for Right To Life UK, said:

“This is a welcome Ten Minute Rule Bill from David Linden MP that aims to relieve pressure on parents who have a very sick or premature baby, at what is an incredibly stressful time for them.

“Ten Minute Rule Bills rarely become law, so we are calling on the Government to commit to introducing new legislation that will ensure that these proposals become law.

“Parents in these situations often unexpectedly find themselves torn between the requirement to return to work and the need to be beside their very sick baby in hospital.

“This small change in the law would provide parents with the flexibility that would ensure they are able to care for their child without the added pressure of potentially losing their job.

ENDS