New Zealand Introduces Paid Leave After Miscarriage
New Zealand leads with compassionate and progressive legislation
New Zealand leads the world again with their landmark ruling that provides 3 days paid leave for couples who suffer a miscarriage or stillbirth at any point. This Bereavement Leave for Miscarriage Bill has been in development for years and was first drafted by Ginny Andersen, the Member of Parliament from Jacinda Ardern's Labour Party.
Final reading of my Bereavement Leave for Miscarriage Bill. This is a Bill about workers’ rights and fairness. I hope it gives people time to grieve and promotes greater openness about miscarriage. We should not be fearful of our bodies. pic.twitter.com/dwUWINVjLm— Ginny Andersen (@ginnyandersen) March 24, 2021
In Australia, people who miscarry are entitled to unpaid leave if they lose a fetus after 12 weeks, while in Britain, it is after 24 weeks. The United States does not require employers to provide leave for anyone who suffers a miscarriage.
A miscarriage or stillbirth remains a painful and incredibly difficult topic for people to talk about and seek support for. Physiologically and psychologically, it can take a long time to recover from a miscarriage. The pain of going through something like this is compounded when there is little out there to help women feel seen, heard and understood.
Things are hopefully changing for the better as we also see women in the public eye like Meghan Markle and Chrissy Teigen talk openly about miscarriages to bring a cultural tide into public consciousness.
Here's to all the brave women in the world and the babies they've lost. Let's keep the compassion going and continue looking into the needs of these parents.