The issue of Paid Parental Leave is shaping as one of the key issues in this election year, and as ever the Greens are fighting hard for the needs of families.
The Greens were the first party to come to grips with this critical issue, introducing legislation into Parliament early last year. The Greens' legislation would provide six months paid parental leave, with superannuation.
It is clear that six months is the bare minimum for paid parental leave - the Coalition has at last come to the same conclusion, while the Government has announced a proposal for 18 weeks, but both the major parties are yet to table legislation to deal with this issue.
The Greens have written to the Prime Minister and the Opposition Leader calling for urgent talks to get this process moving.
We are only at the beginning of the discussion, but we can't waste any more time - Australian families can't afford it.
The Greens legislation would:
• Guarantee six months paid parental leave - as called for by numerous health organisations, women's organisations, and unions
• Amend the Fair Work Act to recognise paid parental leave as a workplace entitlement
• Operate without a means-test for applicants
• Provide for superannuation payments for workers taking parental leave
• Guarantee a pro-rata adjustment of parental leave payments for casual and part-time workers
• Allow mothers and fathers to share parental leave between them