‘You’d have to stretch your earnings’: Moms react to changes to parental leave extension

Expectant parents in Saskatoon are weighing their options when it comes to parental leave.

The federal government will give new moms and dads the option to take an extra six months off work to be with their newborns.

The current system allows parents to take 12 months paternity leave with 55 per cent weekly salary, capped at $543 per week. The changes will give parents the choice for an extended leave of 18 months with 33 per cent wage, capped at $326 per week.

“It’s the same amount of money just over 18 months, so you’d have to stretch your earnings,” Charmaine Sheridan, a Saskatoon mother of two who is currently on maternity leave from her human resources job, said.

Sheridan said she wouldn’t take the extended option, but knows her sister would.

“She would have made it work financially because she really wanted to be at home with her kids as much as she could,” Sheridan told CTV News.

For some mothers an extended leave would make finding a daycare easier.

“They really struggle because a lot of the daycares only take babies that are 18 months plus, so they don’t know what to do when they go back to work after 12 months because they can’t find a daycare spot to take their 12-month-old,” Jennie Vessey, director of Mommy Connections Saskatoon, a mother networking platform, said.

The changes to the paternity leave are set to come into effect Dec. 3.


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