Hong Kong approves five-day paternity leave
New fathers in Hong Kong will soon enjoy up to five days of statutory paternity leave, following a fierce debate in the city’s legislature.
At present, the Employment Ordinance mandates three days of paternity leave – a provision that only came into place in February 2015. It applies to fathers who have been “employed under a continuous contract for not less than 40 weeks”.
The bill to extend paternity leave to five days passed with 54 votes, four abstentions and one objection. It was first proposed by Hong Kong’s Chief Executive Carrie Lam last year.
Opposition lawmakers had in fact sought to amend the extension to seven days, but this was rejected.
The extended paternity leave could kick in as soon as February 2019, just before Chinese New Year holidays.
Male civil servants are already entitled to five days of paternity leave, and have been since 2012 – and at full pay.