INCREASE IN MANDATORY MATERNITY LEAVE
The House of Representatives began debate on The Miscellaneous Provisions (Maternity Protection and the Masters and Servants Ordinance) Bill, 2012 on Friday March 16, 2012.
The following is a brief explanation of some aspects of the Bill
What is Maternity Leave?
Purpose of Maternity Leave
What are the key features of this proposed legislation?
- The Act amends the Maternity Protection Act Chapter 45:57 by increasing the mandatory maternity leave entitlement of thirteen (13) weeks to fourteen (14) weeks.
- The Act also repeals the Masters and Servants Ordinance Chapter 22 No. 5
Important issues for consideration:
- Legislation will be inconsistent with sections 4 and 5 of the Constitution
- Should consideration be given to allowing the spouse or partner of the woman paid paternity leave?
- Should consideration be given to dividing the parental leave equally between both parents to encourage greater paternal involvement in child rearing?
- Is the increase to fourteen (14) weeks sufficient? In many European countries the woman is entitled to as much as 52 weeks maternity leave.
- Has any complaints mechanism or dispute resolution system been established at each Authority?
- How does this amendment relate to proposed public procurement reform that is at present being contemplated?