Parliamentary reply by SM Teo Chee Hean on rationale for reduction in childcare leave when child turns seven years old
THIRTEENTH PARLIAMENT OF SINGAPORE
TUESDAY, 3 SEPTEMBER 2019
Mr Louis Ng Kok Kwang:
To ask the Prime Minister what is the rationale for reducing the amount of childcare leave from six days to only two days when the child turns seven years old.
Under the Child Development Co-Savings Act, parents of Singaporean children are provided with six days of paid child care leave per year until their child turns seven years old. Child care leave provisions have been enhanced progressively over the years. In 2008, child care leave provisions for parents with children aged below seven years old were raised from two to six days. In 2013, two days of child care leave were also extended to parents with children aged seven to 12, recognising that parents with children in primary school would also need time to tend to their children’s needs. More days of child care leave are granted to parents of younger children in the earlier years of their development as they require relatively more care from parents, compared to children in primary school.
We have taken a practical approach to calibrating the child care leave provisions for parents with young children, balancing the caregiving needs of parents with the manpower and operational needs of employers. We will continue to study how to better support working parents, including partnering Singaporeans through the Citizens’ Panel that will convene next month, to identify new ways to address work-life harmony issues.