Britain’s agencies face being denied the services of key staff for
weeks at a time under new Government rules to encourage family life.
Small shops in particular could find themselves vulnerable as a result
of new legislation which allows mothers and fathers more time with their
Now the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising has put agencies on
alert to the family friendly rules in the 1999 Employment Relations
The act allows both parents of babies born or adopted after 15 December
to qualify for parental leave, provided they have at least one year’s
service with an employer. This consists of 13 weeks’ unpaid leave to be
taken during the first five years of the child’s life.
Employers may ask for such leave to be postponed but cannot refuse
Meanwhile, minimum maternity leave increases from 14 to 18 weeks and a
woman’s right to take the full 29 weeks after the birth will now be
given after one year’s service.
Mary Budd, the IPA’s employment affairs consultant, said: ’Larger
agencies have traditionally done more than the statutory minimum but
those with 20 employees could have a big problem.’