Dear A.S.S. Editor

Kudos to Standard Chartered, for setting the…..standard. They have just announced that all female employees of the bank will be getting 20 weeks of paid maternity leave effective from April 1 this year. The policy will also include mothers who adopt and is extended to all employees of the bank regardless of their length of service.

The Bank is certainly showing the way to all other companies and Ministries in Singapore. The bank had said that the move is to recognise that women are “key contributors to the bank’s business”. Currently, 45% of all its bank management team are female, and that women comprised of at least half of its entire workforce in Singapore. This move is certainly showing that this can be done, and that mothers are an important part of the workforce too.

This puts to shame the Government’s latest roll out to mothers, where the Manpower Ministry currently mandates that mothers should get at least 16 weeks paid maternity leave from their employers. Eligible adoptive mothers are entitled to four weeks of Government-funded adoption leave. The rest of the leave, if taken, are to be no paid leave.

Why can;t everyone move towards this model by Standard Chartered? If we are moving towards a society that encourages parenthood, shouldn’t this be the way forward?

Bella Han

A.S.S. Contributor

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