British minister takes maternity leave, a first

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Suella Braverman became the first member of the British government on Tuesday to be able to take maternity leave while retaining her post, following the entry into force of a brand new law allowing it.

Suella Braveman, 40, will be replaced for six months by one of her deputies while continuing to receive her salary, occupying the post of legal adviser to the government (attorney general).

In a video on Twitter, the mother-to-be, who is expecting her second child, expressed her enthusiasm for “being part of history”. Hailing a “milestone” for the country, she said this is a message “for young women who would like to pursue a career in politics”.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson sent her “best wishes for her maternity leave and looks forward to reuniting with her in the fall,” according to a statement from Downing Street.

The law previously in force, “obsolete” by the admission of the services of the British Prime Minister, would have forced her to leave her post if she wished to take maternity leave after the birth of her child.

Boris Johnson had indicated that he planned to take paternity leave after the birth of his last son last April, but has so far postponed it due to the coronavirus pandemic.