The Business Council of Australia (BCA) has long called for reform to the Paid Parental Leave (PPL) system.
The BCA welcomes the Government's expansion of the PPL system as it will bring more equity and flexibility to caregiving roles.
Equal sharing of the caring roles of parents from when a child is born, is essential for long term societal behaviour change to achieve greater equal participation of women in the workforce.
This will boost the economy, lift productivity, and importantly improve the long term economic outcomes for women.
Recent work by Deloitte Access Economics has quantified the economic impact of breaking down the structural barriers that are impacting women in their jobs, careers, savings and capacity to accumulate assets and wealth.
Deloitte found that removing structural barriers and addressing social norms could lead to a potential economic uplift of $128 billion per annum to the Australian economy. This translates to an additional $12,000 per household in Australia per year, generated by the bigger economy. It could also result an additional 461,000 people added to our labour force on a full-time equivalent basis every year for the next 50 years.1
For this reason, the BCA developed a proposed model for the increased sharing of the PPL extension to 26 weeks. It evenly shared the increased PPL, providing the greater equity in the system to address one of the key structural barriers for women returning to the workforce.