Is maternity pay fair? Watch

limetang
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It can very much be argued that maternity pay is a necessary protection for women who choose to have children, allowing them to maintain financial independence etc. whilst raising a family.

But to my mind the implications of businesses being obliged to provide maternity pay are fundamentally unfair, not least on those within a business who choose not to have children and perhaps to a more significant degree, the business itself (especially if its a small business). In what way is it fair that a business is essentially obliged to pay somebody for work they're not doing, that is, when they're on maternity leave.
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rk1103
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I couldn't agree more. Its their choice to have a child so why should someone else have to pay for it. I mean a couple of months is Ok but a 6months-year is pushing it. Employers are also unwilling to hire someone else because of the extra cost, which means other staff are burdened with the extra workload - which unfortunately I have experienced in the past, which has caused me to leave my job due to extreme stress.
I have my own health problems which would technically require a lot of time off work but because of the stigma associated with it, but even getting a week off would require a lot of justification/countless medical certificates (not to mention getting frowned on by everyone else and being made to feel like an outcast).
The real pisstake is when someone goes on mat leave after joining a job for 2 months or so. If anyone else did that for any other reason, they would be laid off.

(Original post by limetang)
It can very much be argued that maternity pay is a necessary protection for women who choose to have children, allowing them to maintain financial independence etc. whilst raising a family.

But to my mind the implications of businesses being obliged to provide maternity pay are fundamentally unfair, not least on those within a business who choose not to have children and perhaps to a more significant degree, the business itself (especially if its a small business). In what way is it fair that a business is essentially obliged to pay somebody for work they're not doing, that is, when they're on maternity leave.
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Falcatas
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Scrap all forced maternity pay. The employer is offering pay for work, not having children at all. There is no right whatsoever for people to provide you support to have a family.

Companies however may voluntary offer maternity pay though for women who have worked for their company for a while.
This evident as many companies actually provide more than they are legally required to.
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limetang
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(Original post by Falcatas)
Scrap all forced maternity pay. The employer is offering pay for work, not having children at all. There is no right whatsoever for people to provide you support to have a family.

Companies however may voluntary offer maternity pay though for women who have worked for their company for a while.
This evident as many companies actually provide more than they are legally required to.
See I understand the motivation behind maternity pay, I do, but I find it a bit too far that a business is not only obliged to offer maternity leave which in and of itself can and does add strain to the business, but that they also have to pay their employees who are off during this time. If maternity pay is a right we are affording to people then it should be the state that is picking up the tab.
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Falcatas
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(Original post by limetang)
See I understand the motivation behind maternity pay, I do, but I find it a bit too far that a business is not only obliged to offer maternity leave which in and of itself can and does add strain to the business, but that they also have to pay their employees who are off during this time. If maternity pay is a right we are affording to people then it should be the state that is picking up the tab.
That doesn't solve anything, it is still other people being forced to pay for other people's choices.
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limetang
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(Original post by Falcatas)
That doesn't solve anything, it is still other people being forced to pay for other people's choices.
True, what I'm getting at is more a compromise of, if maternity absolutely has to be a thing, be a right, then I think the only body that should be picking up the tab is the state, while of course that is still going to be the taxpayer I see that as still being better than bullying a business (in particular small ones, with small staff numbers) into paying employees for doing precisely nothing for the business.
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MarriageSucks
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Scrap maternity leave. Businesses shouldn't have to pay, and as a result of maternity leave being forced upon them they (sensibly!) discriminate against women in the hiring process.

Women with new born babies should be provided for by their husbands. If they were stupid enough to have a baby out of wedlock they deserve the consequences (which will reduce out of wedlock pregnancies and the current burden they put on the state).
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ModYom
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some kind of benefits, instead of maternity pay, would be the answer
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aoxa
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Keep maternity leave, but not for as long, and make maternity pay lower too during the leave period.
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limetang
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(Original post by aoxa)
Keep maternity leave, but not for as long, and make maternity pay lower too during the leave period.
I'd almost agree. I think leave in and of itself is fine and is the most you should expect from a business I.e that a pregnant woman can take that time off and not risk losing her job for the sake of having a child.

Maternity pay on the other hand I think is always an unfair burden to place on businesses especially when you consider the fact that many businesses simply will not hire anybody new for the interim period and will instead just pile more work onto your coworkers.
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StretfordEnd
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Let's discourage having children, which will further affect a replacement rate that is already bad news for business.

I'm sure this kind of short-terminism won't backfire massively in years to come when we all realise there are nowhere near enough workers to replace retirees creating a hugely unbalanced labour market that would take decades to 'fix'
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zippity.doodah
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yes - I think maternity leave should be based on private contract terms - not public law
employers and employees should set contracts themselves and the government should have little to nothing to say in the matter - setting agreements through peace is always better than force (law)
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aoxa
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(Original post by limetang)
I'd almost agree. I think leave in and of itself is fine and is the most you should expect from a business I.e that a pregnant woman can take that time off and not risk losing her job for the sake of having a child.

Maternity pay on the other hand I think is always an unfair burden to place on businesses especially when you consider the fact that many businesses simply will not hire anybody new for the interim period and will instead just pile more work onto your coworkers.
But maternity leave can go on for up to a year. This is an extremely long time to place extra work onto coworkers.

I think the maternity pay should be more like for about 2/3 months the current pay should be kept (90% of the wage) and then upto the 6th month, it could legally be as low as the minimum wage (obviously, if you worked for a large, successful company, they would probably pay more, but setting the pay at the minimum wage would help the small businesses) and then any maternity leave after the 6th month is pay optional.
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ModYom
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why do women keep complaining about being women?

and since when do men get paternity pay anyhow?
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TheInformer
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(Original post by StretfordEnd)
Let's discourage having children, which will further affect a replacement rate that is already bad news for business.

I'm sure this kind of short-terminism won't backfire massively in years to come when we all realise there are nowhere near enough workers to replace retirees creating a hugely unbalanced labour market that would take decades to 'fix'
With the "Global labour market" that we currently have, I don't think a small percentage of people opting out of having children will make any noticeable difference...
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StretfordEnd
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(Original post by TheInformer)
With the "Global labour market" that we currently have, I don't think a small percentage of people opting out of having children will make any noticeable difference...
Most developing countries are already concerned about the long-term risk of skilled labour shortage; why would we choose to exacerbate that risk?

Scrapping legislation on maternity pay will only do one thing; provide yet another indication of why the laughably short-term outlook of the 'free market' needs constant supervision and regulation.
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kahill18
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most people on this thread are vile!
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username1399980
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(Original post by limetang)
See I understand the motivation behind maternity pay, I do, but I find it a bit too far that a business is not only obliged to offer maternity leave which in and of itself can and does add strain to the business, but that they also have to pay their employees who are off during this time. If maternity pay is a right we are affording to people then it should be the state that is picking up the tab.

The state does pick up the tab or most of it

Employers can claim back 92% of Maternity pay or 103% if they are a small employer ( and by small they mean someone who pays less than£45,000 Class 1 National Insurance in the previous tax year- so most small and medium size business)
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limetang
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(Original post by watchingyouwatch)
The state does pick up the tab or most of it

Employers can claim back 92% of Maternity pay or 103% if they are a small employer ( and by small they mean someone who pays less than£45,000 Class 1 National Insurance in the previous tax year- so most small and medium size business)
Oh excellent. That's nice to be proven wrong then.
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username1399980
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(Original post by aoxa)
But maternity leave can go on for up to a year. This is an extremely long time to place extra work onto coworkers.

I think the maternity pay should be more like for about 2/3 months the current pay should be kept (90% of the wage) and then upto the 6th month, it could legally be as low as the minimum wage (obviously, if you worked for a large, successful company, they would probably pay more, but setting the pay at the minimum wage would help the small businesses) and then any maternity leave after the 6th month is pay optional.
It is actually far less generous than you are suggesting

You only get 90% of your pay for 6 week then a maximum of £138.18 (which would be £3.45 on a 40 hour week- much less than the minimum wage) for 33 weeks - after that nothing

And I said in my previous post many business can claim 103% of maternity pay back.

If people in this thread are going to potificate on something it really is a good idea to have a vague idea of what you are talking about...

Still never let the facts get in the way of having a go
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