Mothers to receive $32,500 in maternity leave under Abbott

THE average Australian working mother will get $32,500 over six months in paid parental leave under Opposition Leader Tony Abbott's policy.

Details of the $5.5 billion policy were released today, with mothers to get the paid leave if they have a baby after July 2015.

The policy, much of which was released months ago, will also provide working women who don't have a high salary with the equivalent of the minimum wage for six months after the birth.

Mr Abbott said those women on the average salary of $65,000 would be the "big winners" under the proposal.

The policy marks the largest single budgetary cost for a Coalition election policy, and would be funded by a 1.5% company tax cut.

But Labor Senator Penny Wong said the policy could cost as much as $6.1 billion, extra costs to be met with "associated reductions in other outlays.

She said the policy document was "code for cuts" to areas including education and health.

Mr Abbott said he had a "convert's zeal" for the scheme, saying the "greatest vote of confidence in the future is to have a child".



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