A Liberal Democrat government would triple statutory paternity leave and give new fathers an additional four weeks off work with pay, Nick Clegg will announce today.

The deputy prime minister will make the manifesto pledge when he visits the Scottish constituency of East Dunbartonshire alongside Minister for Women and Equalities Jo Swinson.

"To build a fairer society, the Liberal Democrats want to tear down the barriers that stop people reaching their full potential," Clegg will say.

"For too long, mums have been told their place is at home with their child, while dads return to work.

"I want parents to choose for themselves how to balance work and family."

Fathers are currently entitled to two weeks of paternity leave with at least £138.18 ($138) of pay a week.

The Liberal Democrat policy would mean new dads would be able to take six weeks off work from 2018/19.

"Shared parental leave is my proudest achievement as a minister and I'm delighted that it finally becomes a reality this week," Swinson will say.

"It will help drive a cultural change that champions the role of dads, but we can go further to challenge the gender stereotypes that all too often write fathers off as hapless or bumbling.

"So today I'm calling for a dad revolution. Liberal Democrats want to triple paternity leave, to encourage new dads to spend more time with their child in those vital early weeks and months after birth.

"Most fathers want to spend more time with their new baby — and we know it makes a positive difference for children when they do."

The pledge will come with just 36 days to go before the general election in 7 May, with the Liberal Democrats well behind their 2010 share of the vote in the opinion polls (8% vs 22%).

Elsewhere, Labour will promise to crackdown on zero-hours contracts with new work rights.