Shared Parental Leave? Only One In Four Men Vote Yes

As new paternity legislation comes into force today a new survey reveals most men oppose it

Today’s the day that has been designed to enable women greater flexibility and support when it comes to motherhood and their career. As of today shared parental leave is now a statutory obligation for employers with children born on or after the 1st April 2015. ‘Fantastic!’ we hear you all celebrate…well, not so fast…a new report suggests most fathers are opposed to the idea.

New research released this morning from Glassdoor reveals that the biggest obstacle shared parental leave now faces isn’t from politicians but traditional male attitudes.

The statistics may shock many women out there: only 1/4 men support the new legislation – a shared parental leave of up to 50 weeks – whilst just over 1/10 say they would take the maximum paternity leave to enable their partner to return earlier to work.

So, why are men dragging their heels? Money does seem to be a substantial factor with attitudes in favour of shared leave at its highest in couples who earn between £40,000 to £60,000 a year. Most alarmingly only 7% of the 2,000 men questioned revealed they earn less than their partner meaning they’d be happier to be a stay-at-home dad.

However Jeremy Davies, from think tank the Fatherhood Institute, also suggested to the Daily Mail that status and career-pride is also a sticking point: ‘Is status anxiety an issue? Yes. You’ve got to feel confident that if you do this it’s not going to mess your career up.’

Which brings the debate over to you: would your partner be happy to share parental leave with you? Do you think you’ll take advantage of the new legislation if you have a child in the future? Share your thoughts with us – we’d love to hear from you.

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