enhanced paternity pay

It’s been a big year for pay reporting. This year businesses with 250 or more staff had to start reporting their gender pay data and publishing it on their website. Since then, it’s been suggested that race pay gap and pay-ratio gap should also be reported by companies who employ 250 people. It is also the threshold number for detailed GDPR records.

250 is clearly a magic number in Government thinktanks and committees. This month it was touted that businesses who employ the magic number of people might also have to start publishing their family friendly policies – maternity, paternity, adoption, shared parental leave etc.

The logic behind this suggestion is that many prospective employees are able to find out about family friendly provisions without fear of discrimination if they ask about them at interview. Another possible reason for such a change is that it will encourage take up of shared parental leave.

Since becoming a family friendly option in 2015, shared parental leave has a low take up. The reason for this seems to be twofold; male employees don’t know much about it and the shared parental pay is usually less than maternity pay.

With greater knowledge of the right to take shared parental leave, perhaps there will be an increase parity of terms between parental and maternity pay. This in turn would result in greater uptake of shared parental leave. If more males/non-child birthing parents take parental leave then that will help reduce any unconscious maternity risk bias associated during the recruitment and promotion of female employees.