Congress started deliberations on the disagreeing provisions of the proposed expansion of maternity leave benefits.
The bicameral conference committee agrees on 105 days of maternity leave, with an additional 30 days of unpaid leave. Solo parents are entitled to an additional 15 days of leave.
It is a recognition of the role played by mothers in society, their work time, and providing enough time to care for their children.
The 105 days of maternity leave is a big step in giving particular attention to motherhood premiums.
As parents and as a country that cares for its citizens, do not take for granted the contribution of women. Let us start creating a work environment where women are not discriminated against for wanting to be parents. (Sen. Binay)
Senator Nancy Binay expressed hope that the expanded maternity leave bill would be signed into law this October as an early Christmas gift to working mothers.
According to Binay, mothers working in the public and private sectors can avail themselves of 105 days of paid maternity leave under the proposed law. The cap of four (4) pregnancies is also removed by the measure, as all pregnancies will be covered.
Binay said that companies and other institutions should not perceive the proposed law as a bane to productivity that would lead to more discrimination in the workplace.
In the Philippines, women have reached a high level of labor force participation but working mothers silently receive motherhood penalties and are passed over for promotions and other career advancements because of motherhood duties.
“It pains me to see a mother cutting short the time to bond with her child and go back to work, especially during the crucial period of the infant’s development. The State has a responsibility to provide a positive complement for women in the labor sector, and be mindful of their indispensable roles in society,” Binay said.
Under existing laws, 60 days of maternity leave is granted for normal deliveries, while 90 days is given for cesarean births.
The 60-day provision does not necessarily allow sufficient time for a mother to truly bond and nurture her child after giving birth.
The bicameral version of the expanded maternity leave grants single mothers another 15 days of leave, while those who have miscarried will be granted 60 days of leave.
An option for additional 30 days of unpaid leave is also provided under the bill.
Binay added that the passage of the law would guarantee the country’s adherence to the International Labor Organization (ILO) standard of 98 days of maternity leaves.
“Some countries in Europe have recognized that mother and child bonding deserve a longer time, and allowed a year with pay for them. We will be at par with International Labor Organization’s (ILO) standard of 98 days or the ASEAN coverage of 93 days,” Binay said.
Binay said that with the proposed law, the mother and child can have a longer rate of mother and child bonding, which have long-term effects on the child’s development and health. (Senator Binay)
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