Surigao del Norte Rep. Robert Ace Barbers has lauded the approval of the bill seeking to grant extended maternity leave to employees in the government and private sector.
On Monday, the Bicameral Conference Committee approved the Expanded Maternity Leave bill by adding five more days to the proposed 100-day leave.
Seven days out of the 105-day maternity leave credits could be allocated for paternal leave, while an additional 15 days of paid leave may be availed by solo mothers.
“Let me congratulate the members of the Bicameral Conference Committee for championing the cause of all Filipino families. Tayong lahat po ang panalo dito,” said Barbers, an advocate of women and family rights.
“This bill is a vital piece of legislation as it will provide working mothers with ample time to recover from giving birth and care for their newborns. I am also glad that we have finally recognized the importance of involving fathers in nurturing activities early in their children’s lives,” he added.
He also said that having paid maternity leave will strengthen the economy as it could increase the number of women in the workforce and could help low and average income families earn stable salaries.
“The Constitution is explicit in saying that the State shall protect working women by providing safe and healthful working conditions, considering their maternal functions,” the congressman said.
“Again, this bill will surely benefit not only the women but the entire nation as well, as it can make a huge difference in the economic well-being of Filipino families” he added.
Barbers said he anticipates the immediate signing of the bill when it reaches President Rodrigo Duterte’s office.#