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Extra paid leave for new parents expected in Budget 2019

New parents are in line for an extra two weeks of paid leave as part of Budget 2019.

The extra leave will run alongside current maternity and paternity benefits, according to the Irish Independent.

It is understood the leave is non-transferable between parents and must be taken in the first year of a child's life.

Katherine Zappone would not confirm if the rumours are true but said it is something she supports.

"It's a story that surfaced today. It's always been in the mix," she said.

"It's an important initiative as we move forward and certainly towards the end of November, I will be launching our first ever ten-year national early years strategy.

"As part of our growth in terms of national early years strategy, what happens in the first year is critical."

Frances Byrne Head of Advocacy with Early Childhood Ireland says they welcome the proposals but there needs to be more pay and more time off.

"Parents get, in the case of the mothers at the moment, for six months, in the case of the dads, for two weeks, €235 a week," she said.

"That's a big drop in salary. We need to be moving towards 66% of salary and building up towards that year that the Government has committed to."

Digital Desk