Paid Parental Leave


As companies in the retail and childcare industries, these companies already pay low wages – and with a primarily female workforce, their female workers face a ‘motherhood penalty’. This looks like reduced earnings and career progress, things that could be easily reduced if we demand these companies pay their staff adequate parental leave. Surely the people employed to look after our kids deserve paid parental leave to look after their own.

At SIX, we think that if you’re a big company, you have a responsibility to your staff to be able to provide paid parental leave.


Some of the largest employers on the ASX not paying parental leave: Jewelry retailer Lovisa (ASX:LOV); retail company Premier Investments (ASX:PMV) - the owner of brands like Just Jeans, Peter Alexander and Smiggle; and childcare provider G8 Education (ASX:G8), don’t offer employer-paid parental leave.[1]

Growing the gender pay gap and ‘motherhood’ penalty: A third of the gender pay gap can be attributed to the time women spend outside of the workforce undertaking unpaid care, including looking after newborn children. Women in Australia face a ‘motherhood penalty’, with earnings reduced on average by 55% in the first five years of parenthood.[2] No wonder Australia was ranked 38th in the world for women’s economic participation and opportunity.[3] G8, Lovisa, and Premier Investments have a largely female workforce, helping grow the gender pay gap by not paying parental leave. 

Retail and childcare workers are already underpaid: The enforceable minimum wages in retail and fast food means some workers under the age of 21 are paid a “poverty wage” (50% of median adult full-time wages).[4] Wages for childcare workers, which can be as little as $24 an hour, have prompted a leading union to call for them to receive a 25% pay rise to help address the industry staffing crisis.[5] No employer-funded parental leave on top of their low wages is contributing to  economic inequality. 

Lagging behind competitors: These three companies employ over 27,000 people combined in industries like retail and childcare that are dominated by younger, female employees. These companies are bucking the trend, as female dominated companies are more likely to offer paid parental leave and make it available regardless of gender.[6] 


Caring for the carers: Employer-funded paid parental leave lets parents spend crucial time with their children during the early stages of development. G8, Lovisa, and Premier Investments should adopt industry best practice and pay their staff 26 weeks of employer-funded parental leave for all workers, regardless of gender, with no reference to carer primacy, including for surrogacy, adoption and permanent foster care. 

Paid parental leave is good business: paid parental leave has financial benefits for companies, including retaining top talent, reducing hiring and training costs, and boosting productivity.[7]


Don’t own shares in G8 Education, Lovisa, or Premier Investments? Using the sign up form, pledge your interest to buy shares in these companies. We’ll let you know when we’ve launched our share trading platform, so you can buy these shares. Then we’ll keep you informed about how you can use your shareholder power.

Already own shares in G8 Education, Lovisa, or Premier Investments? Using the sign up form, let us know if you already own shares in these companies via another share trading platform. We’ll keep you informed about how you can use your shareholder power.

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