Photo by @teresacfreitas
Important legislation has been passed in parliament, giving mothers and their partners three days of bereavement leave following a miscarriage or stillbirth. It includes those planning to have a child through adoption or surrogacy.
One in four women in Aotearoa have had a miscarriage, but it is still largely taboo to discuss openly. New Zealand is now one of the few countries in the world to allow leave following one; another is India, which gives workers six weeks of paid leave in the case of miscarriage.
Labour MP for Hutt South Ginny Andersen introduced the bill in 2019, and it was passed unanimously following its third and final reading on Wednesday. She said on Twitter that it was about workers’ rights and fairness.
"The passing of this bill shows that once again New Zealand is leading the way for progressive and compassionate legislation, becoming only the second country in the world to provide leave for miscarriage and stillbirth,” Ginny said in a statement.
“The bill will give women and their partners time to come to terms with their loss without having to tap into sick leave. Because their grief is not a sickness, it is a loss. And loss takes time.”