Extending parent‑care and childcare leave
Written Reply to Parliamentary Question on extending parent-care and childcare leave
Parliamentary Sitting: 14 March 2016
Dr Tan Wu Meng: To ask the Prime Minister whether the Public Service Division will consider (i) extending parent-care and childcare leave schemes to include family care for other immediate family members such as siblings, grandparents and children above 12 who require care and attention; and (ii) increasing the total number of days of such leave.
Written Reply by Mr Teo Chee Hean, Deputy Prime Minister, Coordinating Minister for National Security, Minister in charge of the Civil Service:
As an employer, the Public Service provides family-care leave for our officers, separate from their vacation leave. Our officers enjoy up to 15 days of childcare leave, two weeks of paternity leave, four months of maternity leave and two days of parent-care leave. Where the job allows, our officers may also apply for flexible arrangements in the forms of staggering their work hours, telecommuting or working part-time.
We have progressively enhanced our family-care leave benefits over the years. We introduced two days of parent-care leave in 2012. In 2015, we took the lead to enhance paternity leave from 1 week to 2 weeks ahead of national legislation.
As a large employer in Singapore, any change we make to our family-care leave benefits will put pressure on private sector employers to follow suit. Even as we support pro-family initiatives, we will have to carefully consider the implication of more generous family-care leave benefits on private sector business cost and on the employability of private sector workers.