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Parents have to use annual leave to look after sick children, UK study suggests

Parents have to use annual leave to look after sick children, UK study suggests

By Alan Jones, Press Association Industrial Correspondent

Taking time off work to look after a sick child impacts on a parent’s job, a new study suggests.

A survey of 1,000 working adults found that two out of five had to use their annual leave to stay at home if a son or daughter was ill.

The worst affected are the self-employed, with two out of five losing jobs or contracts as a result, said services firm MetLife UK.

Almost one in three of those polled said they had to take unpaid leave.

Richard Horner, of MetLife UK, said: “Balancing work and family life leads to all sorts of pressures for working parents and the pressure intensifies when children are sick or injured and their parents need to take time off work.

“Parents are paying the price in unpaid leave, lost holiday entitlement and extra bills for looking after children.”

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