children playing

Fathers to have child care leave [KR]

Printer-friendly versionSend by emailPDF version
Yong-sung, Lee
Publication Date: 
22 Jun 2005

See text below.


Working fathers of children will soon be allowed to have paid leave to care their young one as part of government efforts to help turn around the declining birthrate.

The Ministry of Gender Equality yesterday announced a plan to introduce a ``father quota system,'' or a ``family caring holiday system,'' which is designed to enable fathers to actively participate in the upbringing of their children.

A ministry official said the government will work out concrete measures to set the system in motion as early as possible.

He said that the top priority will be placed on the shared role of child raising and state support for infant education.

Under the father quota childcare leave system, fathers are allowed time off from work to care for a newborn, just like the mothers.

The family caring holiday system, on the other hand, is to allow workers to spend more time with their family members by giving them a certain period of holidays.

``The father quota system is common in northwestern Europe, such as Sweden and Norway,'' Gender Equality Minister Chang Ha-jin said during a news conference.

The current child care leave system guarantees a maximum one year holidays after delivery, for either the father or the mother. The ministry intends to prolong the period fathers are paid to take care of their babies.

In administrative support of the new systems, the ministry also plans to introduce a ``family respite system" all around the country, by 2010, and run a family call service soon, which will provide comprehensive help for all kinds of family-related problems.

The introduction of the new systems reflects the government's concerns about the falling birthrate.

- reprinted from the Korea Times