Tuesday, August 9

Families of babies who died at the end of pregnancy: “We ask the Government to grant paternity leave”

When a baby dies at the end of pregnancy, Social Security recognizes the birth permit for the biological mother, but not for the other parent. The Ministry of Equality disagrees with the criterion of the body and defends that there is a right for both parents after the equality of the 2019 permits. The position of Equality, advanced by elDiario.es, has given hope to families in this situation, who claim permission for both parents.

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“We are addressing the Ministry of Equality, the coalition government, who are the ones who have the power. Who can change this,” says Antonio, Valeria’s father, who died in the 39th week of gestation.

Antonio and Noelia hope that the defense of paternity leave by the Ministry of Equality will serve to force a change in the policy of Social Security, the competent body to resolve applications for leave. At the moment, there are opposing voices within the Government.

In the Ministry directed by José Luis Escrivá, the person in charge of the matter, they insist on the rejection of these permits based on a royal decree of 2009, which links the permit exclusively to the care of the minor. For their part, from Equality they affirm that “the law is clear in this regard”: “The Workers’ Statute must be applied, something that the INSS knows perfectly, since it is also the norm that articulates Spanish labor law”, they affirm in Irene Montero’s department, which is based on a “broader” idea of ​​caring for the family.

They ask Equality to intercede

From the Umamanita Association, of support for perinatal and neonatal death, they value as “positive” that Equality considers that the right exists. But, after more than ten years of battle for permission for both parents, they need facts.

“With the 2019 Law, it was a joy to see how parents also began to recognize permits, after so many years fighting for it. But in 2020, in the midst of a pandemic, parents begin to write to us saying that they are denying permits again. permits, “explains Jillian Cassidy, founder and president of Umamanita. The Social Security had issued a criterion, to which this media agreed, by which it concludes that permits are denied.

Now the statement of Equality has given hope to the group. “We would like to meet with the Ministry to address the issue, to try to urge Social Security to change its interpretation, of course,” adds Cassidy.

“Parents who go through this are not granted paternity leave and you are forced to go to the doctor, to explain what happened to you and you end up taking a leave of absence due to depression, because you cannot work,” explains Miguel Ángel Gorbe , lawyer and father of Naira, who also died last week 39 of pregnancy. “We even feel guilty, as if we were cheating someone, when what we need is time for family conciliation of this situation. In the end, many take only a few days and return to work, with his wife alone at home having a terrible time later of what happened, “he continues.

Side fight in court

As a lawyer, Miguel Ángel Gorbe felt the need to bring Social Security to justice to claim paternity leave. “If I don’t report it, I’m a lawyer …”, he says. In addition, he created a blog to share what she experienced with her partner, a midwife by profession, when the girl died just a few days before leaving the accounts and the related “bureaucratic problems”, which she says complicate the grief of the families. “We try to help those who go through this, something that is barely spoken and that must also be made visible,” he says.

Gorbe’s complaint is awaiting judgment from the Supreme Court. After several higher courts of justice (TSJ) recognized parents in this situation on paternity leave, in his case the Supreme Court of Aragon gave him a refusal. After her, and with the other sentences in contrast, he went to the Supreme Court to unify doctrine. “He admitted the appeal, which is very difficult, and the forecast is that the sentence will arrive in December,” he says.

Antonio and Noelia, for the moment, do not feel strong enough to report. “Fighting against the State … We don’t have the strength or the money. What we have is our voice, that’s why we denounce what has happened to us and we ask the Government to prevent other people from going through this in the future. If we can save them more problems, if Valeria achieves that little miracle, we would be very proud, “says her father.

The families also demand other administrative changes that alleviate the hard moments of mourning that families face, such as being able to put the baby’s name in the family book.

“Why can a duel be complicated? It is a natural process of life, but if you lose a child and the Administration and the Government tell you that it is” a fetus “, that it does not deserve to have a name, nor can you register it in the Family book, if you are not granted paternity leave … When duels are disallowed like this, they end up being problematic in terms of mental health, “sums up Cassidy.