More flexible jobs on offer for new mothers in China 

More Chinese provinces are encouraging organisations to create more flexible jobs for new mothers to encourage childbirth.
By: | May 8, 2024

With China’s population falling for the second consecutive year in 2023 and a falling birth rate, Chinese provinces and authorities are urging organisations to offer flexible job roles that would make it easier to balance work and childcare.

This was an announcement made by the official Xinhua news agency early this week, as a strategy to encourage more women to have children while still being able to work. These flexible job roles, dubbed, “Mama’s Posts”, are work roles specially created for mothers, with flexible working hours for candidates to make it easier for them to balance work and childcare, shared the agency.

This comes as a boon to many parents, especially mothers, who stay out of the job market for more than three years until their children are eligible for daycare and would also require flexible working hours on returning to the workforce, the report said.

While many employers are exploring the “Mama’s Posts” model, eligible job options are often limited, as most jobs that women could take would often involve short or temporary contracts. This makes it difficult to protect women’s legitimate rights and interests, shares Xinhua News.

Many available jobs may still involve labour-intensive tasks in manufacturing and processing, which target more unskilled employees in poorer provinces. However, authorities are looking to push the new “Mama’s Posts” model across prosperous cities such as those in Guangdong province, through jobs in professional, technical and management positions.

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Due to the high cost of childcare, and the unwillingness to marry or put their careers on hold in a traditional society that discriminates against women, many women in China have chosen to stay childless.

Past benefits and incentives that authorities have rolled out to boost the birth rate include longer maternity leave, financial and tax benefits for having children and housing subsidies, reported Reuters.