But, all that is about to change as parents who suffer the loss of a child under the age of 18 will soon be entitled to two weeks’ statutory paid leave from work.
The new legal right, which comes into force from April, will be known as Jack’s Law, in memory of Jack Herd. Jack’s mum Lucy has been campaigning on the issue since her 23-month-old son Jack drowned in a pond in 2010.
Pat Harrington, general secretary of Solidarity commented. "It's thanks to Lucy Herd's determination and hard work that others will gain this important right. It shows that ordinary people, with passion and commitment, can make a difference".
Under the new law, parents who lose a child under the age of 18 will be able to take leave as either a single block of two weeks or as two separate blocks of one week each across the first year after the death. The leave is paid at the lower of £151.20 per week or 90% of salary