A Government pledge to extend maternity pay to a year is being scrapped, it has been reported.
The Guardian says the pledge made during the election campaign is being dropped because the Government can't afford it.
Maternity pay appears to be one of the first targets as the Government tries to reduce spending.
Brilliant - penalise mums for the economic crisis. Thanks a bunch.
Giving mothers the pittance they call statutory maternity pay for an extra three months would have been worth up to £1,600 for families but would have cost £500 million overall.
Replacing the Trident missile will cost upwards of £20 billion, just in case you want a figure to put this in context.
The Government is expected to throw a sop to parents, though.
Fathers will reportedly be allowed to claim up to six months' paternity leave.
That's not quite as good as it sounds, however. It means mothers can go back to work after six months and fathers can then take the next six months off - but only get statutory paternity pay for three of them.
This change is not expected to be brought in until April 2011, instead of April 2010 as was previously planned.
Fathers can currently claim up to two weeks of paternity leave, which is a joke in itself, as they only get statutory paternity pay for that too - about £125 a week.
There have also been dark mutterings about more cuts directed at families.
Child benefit is reported to be under the spotlight with politicians from all sides looking at whether it should be means tested.
They had better take their grubby little mitts right off my £20 a week if they know what's good for them.
In times of hardship politicians should be looking at how best they can help families, not hinder them.
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