The Council of Labor Affairs (CLA) is working to realize the administration’s goal of implementing parental leave benefits and extended unemployment benefits, CLA Minister Wang Ju-hsuan (王如玄) announced yesterday.
Wang dismissed media speculation that the government would put off its parental leave policy, adding that the CLA was committed to amending the employment protection law within two months.
Fielding questions at the Legislative Yuan, Wang said the CLA hoped to see employees on parental leave receive 60 percent of their salary for up to six months.
Wang said that funding for the benefits could come from the employment insurance fund or the government’s main budget.
She said the CLA was also working on plans to extend the duration of unemployment benefits to middle-aged and older workers from six months to nine months.
“It is hoped that the amendment can be referred to the legislature for approval when the next legislative session opens,” she said.
President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) promised during his campaign to implement 60 percent pay over two years if elected. This goal would be achieved in stages, Wang said.
The first stage will provide parental leave benefits for up to six months, she said.
After the policy has been implemented for half a year, the council will assess its impact on businesses and the employment of women before lengthening the period of benefits, she said.
Wang also rebutted media speculation that a plan to offer parental leave pay equal to 50 percent of an employee’s salary for up to six months was scrapped because of complaints from the private sector.