The Awakening Foundation, the Birth Reform Alliance and lawmakers are pressing the government to allow expectant fathers to have five days of paid leave before their child is born to accompany their spouse to medical checkups.
The Act of Gender Equality in Employment (性別工作平等法), which grants pregnant women five days of paid leave for medical checkups, should be amended, the groups and lawmakers said on Friday.
Men often do not consider what fatherhood entails until after their child is born, and therefore have difficulty catching up with the bond formed between mother and baby, foundation general secretary Chou Yu-hsuan (周于萱) said.
There is also insufficient social support for expectant fathers, as the prenatal period is focused on mothers-to-be, she said.
The discrepancy in preparedness between husbands and wives often results in unequal distribution of the parenting workload after birth, and can lead to conflicts between the parents, she said.
Article 15 of the act grants women paid leave for checkups, but nothing for their spouses who accompany them, foundation director of policy Chyn Yu-rung (覃玉蓉) said.
Men wanting to accompany their spouses to prenatal checkups often need to use vacation time or take unpaid leave, she said.
Alliance managing director Hsu Shu-hui (徐書慧) said fathers in France and Portugal can take three days of paid leave to accompany their spouses on prenatal checkups, while those in Sweden can apply for a 10-day leave to accompany spouses to child-rearing classes or prenatal checkups.
Taiwan should look to Sweden as a positive example, she said.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) said that a survey last year found that 92.62 percent of workers, 97.78 percent of employers and 81.25 percent of unions were in favor of paid leave for fathers to accompany spouses on checkups.
He has drafted a proposal for an amendment, which would also increase maternal leave to 14 weeks and paternal leave during the childbirth period from five to seven days, Chiang said.
He is collecting signatures for the amendment, he said.
The Ministry of Labor said that paid leave for fathers to accompany spouses on checkups was not an international norm, citing Japan, South Korea and the US as examples.
Fathers can already take leave to be with their spouse during childbirth, and can take unpaid leave for childcare, the ministry said.
Fathers could use their vacation time or apply for family care leave to accompany their spouses on checkups, it added.
Additional reporting by Lee Ya-wen
GREATER NUMBER: The sorties might have been a response to the US and the EU expressing concern on Friday over China’s ‘provocations’ in the Taiwan Strait Twenty-five Chinese military aircraft and four naval ships were detected around Taiwan from 6am Saturday to 6am yesterday, including eight airplanes that had crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait and another two that entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ). The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft that entered Taiwan’s southwestern ADIZ were a Y-8 anti-submarine plane and a BZK-005 uncrewed aerial vehicle, the Ministry of National Defense said. The aircraft that flew across the median line include two Sukhoi Su-30 fighter jets, four J-16 multipurpose fighters and two J-10 jets, the ministry’s official Web site showed. Taiwan’s armed forces monitored the
The building of a Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) plant in Phoenix, Arizona, is expected to lead to the creation of a “Little Taipei” over the coming year, as TSMC employees and related companies move in, a Phoenix-based real-estate agent has said. TSMC is investing US$12 billion to build a wafer plant in northern Phoenix that is scheduled to begin mass production in 2024. The company on Tuesday held a “tool-in” ceremony to mark the installation of the first batch of equipment at the fab. Some TSMC employees have moved into newly constructed apartments in a community 10 minutes’ drive from the
LUNAR NEW YEAR PEAK: Taiwanese who are in China should get vaccinated and consider returning early, as infection rates are expected to increase, the CECC said China faces five major problems once COVID-19 begins spreading there, with a peak in infections likely during the Lunar New Year holidays, Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Victor Wang (王必勝), who heads the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), said yesterday. Wang wrote on Facebook that according to the center’s data, the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in China is worth noting, as the new Omicron subvariants BF.7 and BA.5.2 spreading in China are highly infectious and are more transmissible than the previously dominating Omicron subvariants. “The virus cannot be eliminated even under China’s strict control measures,” he wrote. “Its policy
TWO RISKIEST SPOTS: People living in Taitung County received 20 earthquake alerts over the past 12 months, while Hualien County placed second with 17 alerts Taitung County residents received national earthquake alerts on their mobile phones more frequently over the past year than people in other parts of Taiwan, Central Weather Bureau data showed. Between Nov. 20 last year and Nov. 20, Taitung residents topped other administrative regions with 20 earthquake alerts. They were followed by Hualien County residents who received 17 alerts and Chiayi County residents who received 11, the bureau said. Residents in Penghu, Kinmen and Lienchiang counties did not receive a single earthquake alert, it said. The bureau shared the data on Facebook for the first time since the government connected the earthquake warning