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21st Jan 2015

Good news for families: Dads in line for two weeks paid paternity leave

The Minister is "confident" paternity leave will be included

Katie Mythen-Lynch

There was good news for families this morning after Equality Minister Aodhán O’Ríordáin revealed he is “confident” that two weeks of paid paternity leave will be included in the Family Leave Bill, which is currently being drafted.

Appearing on Prime Time, the minister pointed out that Ireland is one of few European countries that does not currently offer statutory paternity leave for fathers.

Maternity leave of €230 per week is paid for six months with the option to take an additional 16 weeks unpaid.

“I am as confident as I can be at this stage that there will be two weeks paid paternity leave in that legislation but there is no definite in Irish politics.” he said. “Things can change and priorities can change but I know that I’m committed to it and I know that Minister Fitzgerald is committed to it and as I say it’s an important start to the conversation about what we want from Irish society for children for parents, for families.”

Minister O’Ríordáin said the cost of introducing the bill would be relatively low. “I’m hearing figures of about €10m”, he said.