“It’s unfathomable that PhD candidates are ineligible for Paid Parental Leave because their work is not included in the scheme’s current work test. PhD candidates and graduates make significant contributions to Australia through their research, publications and teaching. Excluding them from Paid Parental Leave is a disincentive to advanced learning and research, and an insult to those who pursue that pathway.
“However, the Parliamentary Budget Office has calculated that it would only take about $5 million per year to fix this. But the Federal Government has so far failed to act, the result being that people are delaying decisions about studying for a PhD or having a family. In both cases both the individual and the country are worse off.
“Frankly it’s bewildering that some of Australia’s lowest paid workers remain ineligible for this Government assistance and are forced to make these choices. That’s why I call on the Government to amend the work test to make PhD candidates eligible for Paid Parental Leave.”
Please see attached link from Parliamentary Budget Office costings – https://www.pbo.gov.au/publications-and-data/publications/costings/expanding-paid-parental-leave-eligibility-phd-candidates.