Written answers

Tuesday, 1 December 2020

Department of Defence

Defence Forces Data

Duncan Smith (Dublin Fingal, Labour)
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357. To ask the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of Permanent Defence Force personnel that have availed of paternity leave in 2020; the way same is being promoted amongst personnel; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [40305/20]

Photo of Simon CoveneySimon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
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I am advised by the Military Authorities that a total of 328 members of the Permanent Defence Force have availed of Paternity Leave to date in 2020. This figure includes 9 personnel who commenced their Paternity Leave in December 2019.

The statutory provisions for Paternity Leave, as provided for in the Paternity Leave and Benefit Act 2016, are available to all eligible members of the PDF. These provisions have been included in Defence Forces Regulations, which are available to view on the internal Defence Forces information portal.

In terms of the promotion of entitlements to Paternity Leave, I understand that an induction administrative briefing is delivered to new entrants and administration staff at all levels are available to assist serving personnel who may wish to apply for the various categories of leave, including Paternity Leave. Details are also included in the Defence Forces New Entrants Handbook.

Furthermore, briefings to staff at unit level, frequently address issues such as statutory leave entitlements and the staff of the Defence Forces Personnel Support Service (PSS) are also available to advise and assist personnel as required.

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