Paid Parental Leave boosted by 2 weeks

Yesterday Parliament passed the Labor Government's first tranche of legislation to expand paid parental leave (PPL) ahead of further changes due to be made before July 2024. 

The PPL Amendment, re: (Improvements for Families and Gender Equality) Bill, which passed Monday 6 March 2023, extends paid parental from 18 weeks to 20 weeks from 1 July 2023, with two weeks reserved on a "use it or lose it" basis for each claimant. 

Under the changes, single parents can access the full 20 weeks while removing the requirement that the primary claimants of parental leave pay must be the birth parent, allowing families to "decide who will claim first and how they will share the entitlement". 

They will make paid parental leave consist only of flexible PPL days, allowing claimants to take the payment in multiple blocks, as small as a day at a time, within two years of birth or adoption, and remove the requirement to remain off work to be eligible. 

Social Services Minister Amanda Rishworth said in her second reading speech last year the Albanese Government will bring forward further legislation that will start on July 2024 to progressively increase the scheme's paid leave entitlement by two weeks a year until it reaches 26 weeks in 2026.