TIME FOR UK GOVERNMENT TO BACK MY BILL ON STATUTORY PAID BEREAVEMENT LEAVE FOR ALL

I called on the UK Government to support my Private Member’s Bill on statutory paid bereavement leave for all who lose a close family member, building on the ground-breaking work in which I led cross-party efforts for the SNP through the Parental Leave and Pay Bill 2018, granting parents a statutory right to two weeks paid leave if they lost a child up to the age of 18 or through stillbirth.

Grief has a huge personal impact on all of us, but it also has huge costs for the economy and public purse, costing the UK economy and estimated £23 billion per year and the Treasury £8 billion in lost tax revenues. The statutory right to paid leave will give people the breathing space they need to mourn their loss, ensuring they can return to work when they are ready. Relying on employer discretion and goodwill is simply not good enough.

My Bill has support from across the political spectrum and it is time that the UK Government supported it, so that the right to grieve the loss of our loved ones is enshrined in law. The time for this measure has come, as we continue to live through a health pandemic which has cost 149,000 lives across the UK.

Watch the exchange below.