Finland To Give Men The Same Parental Leave As New Mothers

The woman-led centre-left government of Finland plans to give new fathers the same amount of paid time off work as new mothers, nearly doubling paternity leave.

The country announced its plans on Wednesday.

Paid paternity leave will be extended to nearly seven months, in line with the maternity leave.

Around half that time off can be given to the other parent.

Pregnant women are entitled to a month of pregnancy leave before the expected labor date.

Aino-Kaisa Pekonen, the Minister of Health and Social Affairs of Finland, said the aim of their new law will help improve gender equality.

The minister said the new radical reform will help the country boost the declining birth rate of the country.

She said, “This enables better equality between parents and diversity among families.”

The number of newborns in Finland fell by around a fifth between 2010 and 2018, to just 47,577 babies. The population of Finland is currently at 5.5 million.

Minister Aino-Kaisa Pekonen said other countries such as Iceland and Sweden saw an increase in their birth rates after introducing similar rules.

The 5 major parties in Finland right now are all led by women, whom four are not even 35.

The women took over in December and said gender equality will be their main priority.

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