Mon, May 12, 2008 - Page 12 News List

Workers unlikely to take parental leave

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

Although Taiwanese workers have the legal right to take unpaid parental leave, 56 percent of workers surveyed recently by 1111 Job Bank said their employers do not provide the option.

Among respondents whose employers provide parental leave, only 10.86 percent have taken such leave, while another 16 percent opted to quit to take care of their children rather than apply for an extended absence, the survey’s results, released on Saturday, showed.

Among respondents who had taken parental leave, 84.21 percent applied to take no more than one year off of work, but 31.58 percent did not return to work after the leave expired, the survey showed.

The reasons mentioned most frequently by the respondents for not returning to their original employment included finding better jobs, the jobs were inconvenient for child care, that their employers did not restore their jobs and that the duties of their jobs had changed.

As to the reasons for not taking parental leave, most respondents said they were under heavy financial pressure and could not afford to lose their salaries.

Others said that they were concerned that their positions would be filled permanently by replacements.

Data from the Council of Labor Affairs show that only 3 percent of the more than 100,000 women covered by the Labor Insurance system who gave birth between 2005 and last year took parental leave.

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