Ensuring equality and working with communities
Parental Leave for Councillors
Southampton City Council, Sunderland City Council, Islington Council, Lincoln City Council
Improving the diversity of our elected representatives has always been a priority of Labour in local government. In 2018, the LGA Labour Group set up the LGA Labour Women’s Taskforce to address the barriers faced by women in local government. In autumn 2018, the taskforce launched a parental leave policy that can be adopted by councils and Labour Groups alike.
In 2017, the Fawcett Society found that only 4% of councils had a parental leave policy in place and many councillors, particularly women, spoke of the challenges faced juggling the role of a councillor and having a baby or young child. Since the launch Southampton City Council, Sunderland City Council, Islington Council and Lincoln City Council have adopted the policy for their full councils and for their Labour Groups. Gloucester Labour Group passed the parental leave policy then passed the motion at the Tory-run Gloucester City Council full council meeting. North Warwickshire Labour Group adopted the parental and after a motion at full council pledging to look at parental leave for councillors are one step closer to achieving this at a council level. Bristol Labour Group, Newcastle Labour Group, Lambeth Labour Group and Corby Labour Group have all adopted the parental leave policy, and will be taking it to full council meetings in early 2019. The parental leave policy will give certainty to councillors who become parents, allowing them to take a period of leave from their role after becoming a parent.