Hontiveros hails signing of Expanded Maternity Leave Act into law
MANILA, Philippines — Opposition senator Risa Hontiveros on Thursday hailed the signing of the Expanded Maternity Leave Act into law, which gives longer maternity leave for working mothers.
President Rodrigo Duterte signed the Expanded Maternity Act on February 20, a copy of which was released to the media on Thursday.
Hontiveros, who pushed for the passage of the measure as chair of the Senate committee on women, said it is a big victory for Filipino women and families.
“Isang malaking tagumpay para mga kababaihang Pilipino at ating mga pamilya ngayong araw sa pagsasabatas sa wakas ng expanded maternity leave law (This new maternity leave law a big win for Filipino women and our families),” Hontiveros told reporters in an interview.
She said the Philippines is now “at par” with international standards in terms of the minimum number of maternity leave days.
“Mas may panahon ngayon si nanay na magpahinga pagkatapos magbuntis at manganak, mas may panahon i-establish ‘yung exclusive breastfeeding, mas may panahon din si tatay at ‘yung buong pamilya mag-bond kay baby,” Hontiveros pointed out.
(Mothers now have more time to rest after pregnancy and childbirth. There is more time to establish exclusive breastfeeding. Fathers and the whole family will also have more time to bond with the baby.)
Under the law, working mothers working in government offices and private companies are given 105 days or 3 months of paid maternity leave. This can be extended to 30 days of leave without pay.
Meanwhile, seven out of the 105 days leave period may be transferred to fathers. This would expand fathers’ paid paternity leave to 14 days.
Moreover, solo working mothers would also get an additional 15 days leave or a total of 120 days of paid maternity leaves. /ee
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