Shared Parental Leave and Pay (Bereavement) Bill Debate

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Department: Department for Business and Trade

Shared Parental Leave and Pay (Bereavement) Bill

Lindsay Hoyle Excerpts
2nd reading
Friday 26th January 2024

(4 months, 3 weeks ago)

Commons Chamber
Read Full debate Paternity Leave (Bereavement) Act 2024 Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
James Daly Portrait James Daly
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That is absolutely correct. Obviously there are bad employers, but the colleagues I know who run their own businesses, who value their employees, would certainly not resile from their responsibilities to those employees. I appreciate the point about legislation, but we must have faith that employers will rise to the challenge. I think very few employers—I am sure there are some bad examples—would resile from that challenge.

Before us we have a Bill that states Parliament’s clear view that a grave injustice must be remedied. It is an honest Bill that says it is the start of a journey, a discussion not only about how we can build on the Bill, but how flexible working and other employment legislation can develop and respond to the modern economy. I have severe concerns about flexible working from home. My local authority tells me that a lot of people are no longer working in the town centre, which is having a hugely detrimental impact on the high street. The Bill is part of sensible and pragmatic employment legislation, and part of an ongoing response to the modern economy and modern needs that understands the nuances and differences in people’s lives.

Any Bill that touches a person’s life in a positive way should be fought for, and this is a good Bill. I encourage the Under-Secretary of State for Business and Trade, my hon. Friend the Member for Thirsk and Malton (Kevin Hollinrake), to think about the points our hon. Friend the Member for Congleton (Fiona Bruce) made about bereavement counselling. There is in my constituency a wonderful charity that deals with the consequences for parents of suicide and supports parents and carers in those circumstances. In this ongoing debate, we need to think about how the state can invest in services that give people the best chance to come to terms with horrific events. We are a good Parliament, ours is a good country, and this debate shows that. It shows humanity and reflects our belief that employers will rise to the challenge the Bill sets. I think Aaron and Tim will forever be proud of what has happened here today.

Lindsay Hoyle Portrait Mr Speaker
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I call the shadow Minister.