Help babies have parents by their side

Over 300 babies are admitted to neonatal units everyday and separated from their parents. Join our movement and speak up for babies like Grayson to keep parents by their side.

Evidence shows better outcomes for babies when their mums and dads are involved in providing hands-on care while they are in hospital.

Yet every year thousands of parents have to return to work when their baby is still critically ill.

This is not right

Watch our video and listen to dad, SJ, express in his own words the impact of this separation on him and his son Grayson.

Babies on the neonatal unit need their parents by their side to care for them while they are in hospital and when they are home.

But existing maternity and paternity leave entitlements are inadequate for parents whose baby needs specialist care.

We want parents to be better supported to stay fully involved in the care of their baby.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy is currently conducting a review of the support offered to working parents when their baby is born needing neonatal care.

Take action now

Help babies have parents by their side. Add your voice and help us put pressure on the Government to extend leave and pay for parents of babies in specialist care.
Email your MP

Why do we need to take action?

Having a baby in neonatal care has a huge impact on family finances, costing on average an additional £2,256 per family. Extra costs include travel costs, overnight accommodation to stay close to their baby, expensive hospital food and loss of earnings.

The current 39 weeks of paid maternity leave is not long enough for babies born very early or sick - or their parents. Due to their vulnerability at birth, these babies may reach key development milestones later than their peers.

Ongoing health issues mean they may be discharged from hospital on oxygen and are at a greater risk of becoming seriously ill from common infectious illnesses.

Statutory paternity leave runs out long before babies come home from hospital. This forces many dads and partners to be signed off sick or go back to work while their baby fights for their life. This is not good for the babies or their parents - but it also is not good for their employers.

If parents want to take extra time after their initial parental leave, they usually only have the option to take this time off without pay, but most cannot afford to take unpaid leave at a time when finances are already stretched due to having a baby on the unit.

What can you do to help?

Take action now

Help babies have parents by their side. Add your voice and help us put pressure on the Government to extend leave and pay for parents of babies in specialist care.
Email your MP

£2,256

The average additional cost per family of having a baby in neonatal care

39 weeks

the current paid maternity leave - nowhere near long enough for babies or parents