Half day of parental leave per week or whole day per fortnight shows to be clear success
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    Half day of parental leave per week or whole day per fortnight shows to be clear success

    The one-tenth parental leave system shows to be a success. Credit: Wikipedia

    The 1/10th parental leave system, which allows workers to take half a day off per week or a whole day off per fortnight, is a clear success, according to a study published on Wednesday by the Attentia human resources consultancy.

    The system took effect on 1 June last and, thus far 4.28% of employees who take parental leave have used it, with men staying home more often to look after the children than women.

    An average of 2% of wage-earners has been taking parental leave, which only applies if the child is under the age of 12 years. Over the past five years, the figure has remained stable, says Attentia, but while the number of office workers taking parental leave has not increased, more and more blue-collar workers are doing so, with the current number being 13.7% higher than in 2015.

    Up until June, employees could choose between three possibilities: full-time leave of four months, continuing to work part-time for eight months or working 4/5 of the time for 12 months.

    According to Attentia, the formula most popular among workers is full-time leave, with 53.38% of wage-earners with children aged under 12 years who took parental leave this year opting for this formula, especially those who work under the 4/5ths of the time. Close to 60% of the days off taken under the 1/10th system fall on a Wednesday.

    There is also a huge gap between men and women, Attentia found, although it is narrowing fast. An average of 2.65% of women takes the 1/10th leave, down from 3.06% in 2015, while only 1.72% of men, a 20% increase on 2015, when just 1.39% did so.

    Oscar Schneider
    The Brussels Times