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Maternity leave key to workplace productivity

Improving maternity leave arrangements will play a key role in lifting workplace productivity and encouraging more women to participate in the workforce, according the head of the Australian Industry Group, Heather Ridout.

Speaking on ABC Radio this morning, Ridout said more needs to be done if we are to meet Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s target of improving average productivity by 40 percent over the next 40 years in order for Australia to maintain living standards.

“ On the productivity side, we need to look at areas like our education and training levels, we need to look at how healthy we are, we need to be able to remain in the workforce for longer,” she said.

“We need to encourage women at work who are having children to get back into the workforce through better childcare, more flexible work arrangements,” she added.

Ridout said lifting the pension age to 67 has gone part of the way to achieving the goal set out by the government, and getting more women into the workforce will also be vital.