April 06, 2016

Social Services Minister Christian Porter has this morning confirmed that the Liberals are going to the election promising to cut paid parental leave for thousands of Australian parents.

The Government’s promised cuts to paid parental leave won’t begin on 1 July because of Labor’s effective opposition. But on Radio National this morning, Mr Porter confirmed they are still committed to the cuts:

“People who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, the status quo is clearly going to be maintained for a period of time. However that does not mean that this Government at the moment is not trying to change that or if it were re-elected wouldn’t also be looking at ways in which to modify the existing system.”

[Christian Porter, Radio National Breakfast, 6 April 2016]

This confirms that a vote for the Turnbull Liberals at the next election is a vote for savage cuts to paid parental leave.

The Coalition’s cuts to paid parental will leave about 80,000 new mums worse off every year. Some families will lose as much as $11,800 in support.

What kind of prime minister rips $11,800 from the pockets of new mums? It might seem like small change to Malcolm Turnbull, but to young families it makes all the difference.

Because of these cuts, thousands of new mums will be forced to choose between returning to work early and missing out on time with their new babies, or staying at home and having their living standards drastically reduced.  

Labor introduced Australia’s first national paid parental leave scheme to give new parents the financial support to take time off work to care for their newborn in those critical early months, and keep them connected to their workplaces. 

It was carefully designed to target assistance to parents on low and middle incomes, many of whom are in casual and part-time work.

Mr Porter’s claim this morning that Labor’s paid parental leave scheme is “inequitably generous” shows he is not across the detail of the policy, and is completely out of touch.

The Minister’s own Department has confirmed that many women who will be worse off under his cuts are on a median income of $43,000.

Only a Liberal could think the minimum wage is “inequitably generous”.

Malcolm Turnbull would rather give a tax cut to multinational companies than give working mothers support while they care for their newborn baby.

There is only one way to end Malcolm Turnbull’s war on working mums – vote Labor.  


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