Women employees have a reason to celebrate. Organized sector women employees will now get six months of paid maternity leave, as the Lok Sabha on Thursday amended the law on maternity benefits. This move gives women more than double the current leave. The law will apply to all establishments employing 10 or more people.
As per the amended law, 26 weeks paid leave will be available to women for first two children, and for any child beyond that will get 12 weeks paid leave. Even commissioning and adopting mothers have been included as part of the beneficial move, but the maternity leave period is capped at 12 weeks for them.
That’s not all, as per the new legislation all companies that have 50 employees or 30 women employees, whichever is lower, will have to not only facilitate “work from home” facility for new mothers, but also open creches.The woman will be allowed four visits to the creche a day. This will include her interval for rest. The bill is expected to benefit around 1.8 million working women.
India is surely making progress when it comes to women’s right. In fact it has beaten many developed nations with this move. According to the data with PRS Legislative Research, the mai-baap of the world USA gives 12 weeks maternity leave which is unpaid leave. Yes, you read that right, it’s an unpaid leave.
UK and Australia offer one of the longest paid maternity benefit in the world, which stands at 52 weeks. In UK, for first 6 weeks, 90 percent of average weekly earnings is paid. Thereafter, a flat rate or 90 percent (whichever is less) is paid for weeks between 7-39. However, in the remaining weeks between 40-52, women don't get any salary benefit. As far as Australia goes, women get 18 weeks at the federal minimum wage level.
Canada, Brazil and South Africa offer 17 weeks of paid maternity leave. In percentage terms, women in Canada get 55 percent of their salary as paid benefit for 15 weeks. While in South Africa women get 60 percent of their wages, Brazil gives 100 percent of the wages to women during the leave period.
Singapore and France both offer 16 weeks of paid leave to woman where the latter pays 100 percent wage, while 100 percent is paid for first and second child in Singapore.
China offer 14 weeks off with 100 percent salary.
In fact some countries like UK, South Africa, Singapore, Brazil, France and Australia also offer paternity leave. In case of South Africa, UK, and Australia, this leave is paid as well.
The source of funding for these paid maternity leave varies from country to country. For instance, in India the money comes from the employer. In Australia, and Canada it’s public funding. While other countries use either insurance scheme or a mixed contribution of employer, employee and also the government in some case.
According to the official website of Sweden, parents are entitled for 480 days of paid parental leave when a child is born or adopted.
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Updated Date: Mar 10, 2017 13:51:49 IST