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PP propose changes to maternity entitlement

Wed 3rd Feb 2010

The Partido Popular today proposed a change to the law concerning statutary maternity leave, suggested that it should be increased from 16 to 20 weeks, and that a tax rebate of up to 1,800 per annum should be introduced for a second child.

The changes proposed as part of a national strategy are intended to improve women's health and to bring in line the inequalities between the sexes.

The plan calls for the rights of all women to have access to social and institutional support, as well as medical and psychological help during pregnancy, aswell as special attention to women's needs after the birth.

The PP intends that these proposals will help to boost the birth rate in Spain and assist women through pregnancy by introducing measures to ease the balance between work and family life.

One of the main points in the proposal is to increase maternity leave from 16 to 20 weeks, with the option to increase this leave by a further two to four weeks per child for multiple births.

Women who wish to continue breastfeeding would also be allowed two hours off during their working day to feed their baby, or could opt to reduce their working day by one hour instead. The daily leave currently in place for breastfeeding mothers is 1 hour and 30 mins respectively.

The PP also plan to establish a national network of nursery schools, in collaboration with regional authorities and private enterprise, in the hope of creating more crèche facilities within women's workplaces.

Other tax incentives include a proposal to increase in the tax rebate for the second child from 1,200 to 1,800 euros (up to the age of three years) and 2,400 euros for third and subsequent children.

Finally, the proposals demand that the government produces a bill on adoption within the next 6 months, which will debate the possibility of starting the adoption process during pregnancy.

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