Working dads in SA can now take 10 days paternity leave
Are you having a baby? Changes to the South African Basic Conditions of Employment Act mean that fathers are now entitled to 10 days paternity leave. This exciting law change means that fathers get time off to bond with their babies. This enables fathers to spend more time with mom and baby, giving them time to bond.
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The changes to the Basic Conditions of Employment Act mean that fathers now get 10 days of paternity leave. Previously, new fathers were entitled to three days of family responsibility leave. This left insufficient time for a father to bond with their new baby as well as to contribute to caregiving.
During November 2018, President Cyril Ramaphosa approved law changes for paternity leave in South Africa. Another advantage of these law changes is that they acknowledge the important role that both the mother and father play in raising children. This is a step in the right direction of promoting gender equality at work.
While the new law on paternity leave is commendable, there are concerns that 10 days are still insufficient. There is still a large discrepancy between the 10 days that fathers receive and the four months that mothers are entitled to. Our country is the first in Sub-Saharan Africa to acknowledge the importance of parental leave in their laws.
The 1997 Basic Conditions of Employment Act stipulates that mothers are entitled to four months of leave. The law changes are also significant for maternity leave as it recommends that employers provide mothers with 66% of their income during their time off if their salaries are under the stipulated threshold.
Mothers are also entitled to six weeks off after having a miscarriage in the third trimester of their pregnancy or when giving birth to a stillborn baby.
President Cyril Ramaphosa also recently approved law changes that provide guidelines for adoption leave. Adoption leave is set at a minimum of 10 consecutive days for new parents of children who are younger than two years. The inclusion of adoption and surrogacy leave is also a noteworthy achievement for South Africa.
If you’re preparing to become a parent, it’s important to know about these law changes. Paternity leave is a notable step in the right direction for the equal distribution of parenting responsibilities. It also recognises the important role dads play in their children’s lives.
Job Mail Staff Writer
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