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M’sian Netizen Shares Why Paternity Leave is Important After Datuk Complains Companies Will Lose Money

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Malaysian Employer's Federation Said No To 3-Day Paternity Leaves, But Here's Why It's So Important - World Of Buzz 1
Source: Stocksy & Stocksy

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Many Asian countries have already recognized having a child is a team effort, having implemented both maternity and paternity leaves. Sure, paternity leaves are not exactly as long as maternity leaves considering fathers don’t have to go through what labor does to a mother’s body, but they’re long and well compensated enough for new fathers to not have to worry about losing a chunk of their paycheck while they do what’s necessary for their family.

Countries like Singapore have implemented paid paternity leaves of two weeks, fully funded by their government, whereas in China, new fathers are entitled to paternity leaves of no more than 14 days. 

Scandinavian countries on the other hand have taken paternity leaves to the next level with Norway offering new fathers 26 fully paid weeks off and Sweden has been entitling parental leaves (shared between both parental parties) of 12 months since 1974.

Paternity 6

Source: videoblocks

You might be wondering why Malaysia does not legislate paternity leave or similiar schemes for new fathers, such as The Human Resources Ministry’s proposal to at least establish a 3-day paternity leave system. (Only the private sector does not have paternity leaves, Malaysian civil servants and government employees are entitled to 7 to 14 days of paternity leave.)

Well, the Malaysian Employees Federation (MEF) has spoken up, rejecting the idea, stating that implementing a 3-day paternity leave policy for new fathers in the private sector can effect a company’s operational costs, as reported by Berita Harian.

MEF executive director Datuk Shamsuddin Bardan added that he understands the importance for a father to be present with his wife and newborn to build a strong family bond, but believes they can do so over the weekends without having to cause their company any loss.

Paternity 5

Source: istock

“We believe that the bond can be heightened if husbands change their mindset that helping their wives can strengthen the parental bond with the baby, not necessarily with a 3-day leave.”

A psychology graduate, A Mental Health Advocate (@AimanPsikologi) has since taken to Twitter to share a list of reasons as to why new fathers in the private sector should be entitled to some sort of leave system, pointing out that it’s not just about family bonding.

He captions his post with 6 reasons why fathers require paternity leave:

1) To care for the wives still admitted at the hospital
2) Managing the newborn’s items (the needs of the newborn and so forth)
3) Afterbirth management
4) Assisting with the newborn to lessen the wife’s burden
5) Learning on how to care for the newborn (especially if it’s the first child)

Adding that there are many reasons not present in his list, the netizen closed with a snide shot at Datuk Shamsuddin, “And yet… ‘Paternity leave is not necessary'”.

Netizens were quick to add to his list however, while some doctors even shared their opinions on the importance of paternity leave.

Paternity 1

Source: twitter

This comment further adds to the legitimacy of the list:

7) Registering the baby with the National Registration Department
8) In case of Infant Jaundice – to deliver mother’s milk
9) Handling the mother’s check out process from the hospital – billing and so forth
10) Handling the baby’s check out process from the hospital
11) In case of Infant Jaundice but have been allowed discharge – clinical check up of up to 2 to 3 times

Paternity 2

Source: twitter

This doctor added that, “If the wife is experiencing post-partum haemorrhages at home, who will bring her to the hospital. Not everyone has company at home besides the husband.”

The Society for Equality, Respect and Trust for All Sabah (Serata) founder and chairperson Sabrina Melisa Aripen backed up netizens, sharing their disappointment for the lack of consideration faced by new fathers while adding that paternity leaves should be considered a method to retain employees instead of considering costs.

Paternity 7

Source: freepik

“[Employers] should look at paternity leave as an employment benefit that will persuade people to stay, and not as a cost. In fact, studies have shown that a happy, more satisfied employee who is not stressed out about family care issues is much more able to focus on doing better at work,” Sabrina said to New Straits Times.

Additionally, paternity leaves can instil gender equality in Malaysia, where new fathers can assist with caring for the babies while new mothers can still contribute to their work without having to lose out on career advancements due to long absences.

A Mental Health Advocate’s Twitter posting has since garnered over 9,400 retweets.

So, what do you think? Should new fathers be entitled to a paternity leave? Is 3 days even enough to handle the necessary responsibilities that come with a newborn child? Let us know in the comments section!

 

Also read: Viral Post Urges Malaysians to STOP Misusing the Emergency Department at Hospitals

Malaysian Employer's Federation Said No To 3-Day Paternity Leaves, But Here's Why It's So Important - World Of Buzz


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