Netanyahu administration pushes ahead with paid paternity leave bill

Most other countries part of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, give fathers eight weeks of paid paternity leave.

January 29, 2019 06:32
1 minute read.

A baby in a stroller or carriage (illustrative). (photo credit: INGIMAGE)


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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his cabinet have been drafting a bill which they hope to soon enact, giving paid paternity leave to fathers. Currently, fathers take leave, but without pay, according to Israeli media.

Most other countries who are a part of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development [OECD], give fathers eight weeks of paid paternity leave, not so Israel.  

While Israeli fathers can share the 15-week leave their partner gets, less than 1 percent opt to do so, according to the report.

“The fertility rate in Israel is the highest in the OECD and the rate of employment among women is also among the highest in the OECD, but the labor market has not adapted to the fact that both spouses work,” MK Rachel Azaria (Kulanu) said, when Azaria and others were trying to extend maternity leave in 2017.

Supporters of paternity leave tout studies that demonstrate the benefit of a male presence in the upbringing of children as well as the progress the policy will make for gender equality. Maternity leave still has adverse effects on women's careers and pay gaps, this new policy may help change that. 

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