Current Affairs

European Parliament: Same-sex parents must have equal rights to parental leave

Nick Duffy May 19, 2016
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The European Parliament has affirmed that same-sex parents should have the same rights to parental leave as anyone else.

A Parliamentary report this week evaluated the implementation of the EU law on parental leave.

It stressed that “adequate, individual, compensated parental leave is crucial for same-sex parenting couples to be able to achieve a work-life balance”.

It added: “Some Member States have transposed the provisions of the directive beyond the minimum scope of application, enabling (…) same-sex parents and parents of adopted children to benefit”.

Maria von Känel of the Network of European LGBTIQ* Families Associations (NELFA) said: “[We] welcome the Parliament’s report wholeheartedly as it highlights the importance of providing LGBTIQ parents and their children with the same legal protection and rights as any other family in the European Union.

“NELFA hopes all Member States will pay attention to the Parliament’s message and follow the example of those Member States that have gone beyond the Directive in providing real equality for all families, in particular as regards the right to parental leave for Rainbow Families.”

In a separate case this month, EU officials warned that the US states of North Carolina and Mississippi are violating a human rights treaty with anti-LGBT legislation.

The two states have attracted scrutiny for passing laws rolling back vital LGBT anti-discrimination protections, ostensibly with the goal of stopping trans women from using men’s bathrooms.

A spokesperson for the EU said: “The recently adopted laws including in the states of Mississippi, North Carolina and Tennessee, which discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex persons in the United States contravene the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which the US is a State party, and which states that the law shall prohibit any discrimination and guarantee to all persons equal and effective protection.

“As a consequence, cultural, traditional or religious values cannot be invoked to justify any form of discrimination, including discrimination against LGBTI persons.

“These laws should be reconsidered as soon as possible.

“The European Union reaffirms its commitment to the equality and dignity of all human beings irrespective of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

“We will continue to work to end all forms of discrimination and to counter attempts to embed or enhance discrimination wherever it occurs around the world.”

More: baby, Couples, EU, Europe, Europe, European Parliament, Gay, infant, LGBT, parent, Parenting, Same-sex

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