Vietnamese Female Workers Need More Maternity Leave

HO CHI MINH City, Oct 30 (Bernama) — A survey done at 34 textile and garment, leather-shoe, seafood processing and other factories in 10 provinces has shown that labour policies for women workers are impractical, Vietnam News Agency (VNA) reported Thursday.

The Vietnam General Confederation of Labour’s Women Workers’ Welfare Division, which did the survey, found that policies regarding maternity leave and wages during this period were not women-friendly.

Pham Thi Thanh Hong, deputy head of the division, said children were not fed properly during their first six months because their mothers, who were unable to rest or take care of their health, did not secrete enough milk or were at work.

The survey found that with the current four-month leave for women post-delivery, almost 50 percent of women workers were unable to nurse their babies for a full six months.

Nguyen Trong An, deputy director of the Child Care and Protection Department, warned this was causing malnutrition among children in Vietnam.

During the four-month leave period, the employees only receive a salary of 700,000 VND (US$43.7) to 1.2 million VND (US$75) a month. As a result, almost 32 percent of workers want to return to work before the four months are up.

Some enterprises pay an allowance for raising children below one year. Griee River Wood in Binh Duong province pays 50,000 VND per month, Yamaha Motor Vietnam (Hanoi) , and Good Top (HCM City), pay 100,000 VND.

Women workers have asked the division to increase their maternity leave to six months to better care for their children.

Another problem facing women returning to work after delivery is entrusting their children’s care to someone else.

Public kindergartens only take in children aged 18 months or more, Private kindergartens demand 500,000 – 700,000 VND a month, not much less than their mothers’ wage of 1-2 million VND.

Vietnamese Female Workers Need More Maternity Leave

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