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The Labor Code provides for paid paternity leave

The RA NA Committee on Health and Social Affairs discussed and came to a positive conclusion on the draft law “On Making Amendments and Addenda to the RA Labor Code” authored by Tsovinar Vardanyan, Sona Ghazaryan, Lusine Badalyan, Armen Pambukhchyan, Narek Zeynalyan.


In particular, one of the proposed amendments refers to paid leave for the baby’s father after the birth of the child. It will be called paternity leave and will allow the baby’s father to receive paid leave for up to 5 working days at the expense of the employer within 30 days after the birth of the child. According to the authors, this is done in order to encourage paternity, so that the baby’s father will have the opportunity to enjoy the joy of fatherhood and take care of his child and wife who has just given birth. Such legislative regulations are enshrined in the legislation of a number of countries, including the Republics of France, Ireland, Portugal and the Kingdom of Spain. It should be noted that last year, by the decision of the European Parliament, employers in all EU countries are obliged to provide paternal paid leave to fathers for at least 10 days.


The bill presented by the deputies also refers to the guarantees provided by the Labor Code for pregnant women and those who actually take care of the child, who are not on leave, and who take care of a one-year-old child. In particular, the authors of the bill emphasize that if women return to work from maternity leave, regardless of the age of the child, the warranty period is only one month, which cannot be considered sufficient. According to the proposed project, the women’s warranty period is extended until the child reaches one year of age.


The other change concerns the change in the essential working conditions set forth in Article 105 (2) of the Labor Code, which may be initiated by the employer for subjective reasons, which does not cover persons who are not on maternity leave and who are not actually on leave. Such regulation makes the working guarantees of the above-mentioned groups vulnerable and leaves loopholes for unscrupulous employers. Such problems have been identified during law enforcement practice. The proposed legislation will provide some guarantees for pregnant women and caregivers.


The substantiation of the bill states that the primary purpose of its adoption is to implement Article 16 of the Constitution in law enforcement practice, according to which the family, as a natural and basic cell of society, is the basis for population preservation and reproduction, just as motherhood and childhood are under the special protection and patronage of the state. The proposed drafts are expected to further protect the rights of workers, particularly women, in the legislative field, as well as to encourage them to engage in economic activities, increasing the level of protection in the workplace.


It should be noted that according to point 25 of the final observations of the 5th and 6th regular reports of the RA Committee for the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, the RA Government is recommended:


… “To create more opportunities for women to engage in formal employment, including equal distribution of equal family responsibilities among women and men, to provide adequate and sufficient conditions for child care, as well as to motivate men to exercise their rights to physical leave.”


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