Maternity Leave in UAE
The number of days given as maternity leave varies between the private sector and public sector and the working conditions (HR Policies) set up the company. When compared to other countries maternity leave benefit in UAE is bit shorter.
As per the Federal Labour Law UAE Article (30), a working women is entitled to maternity leave with full pay for a period of forty five days(45 Days) including the time before and after delivery, provided that her continuous period of service with the employer is not be less than a year(1 year). But if a working woman has not completed the said period, the maternity leave shall be with half pay.
A working woman, on the expiry of the maternity leave, may discontinue to work without pay for a maximum period of one hundred(100) consecutive or intermittent days if such absence is due to illness which doesn’t enable her to resume work. Such evidence shall be evidenced by a medical certificate issued by a medical authority attested by the competent health authority or endorsed by such authorities to the effect that the illness resulted from pregnancy or delivery.
Leave provided for in the preceding two paragraphs shall not compute as part of other leaves.
As per the Article (31), in addition to any prescribed rest period, a working woman nursing her child shall, during the eighteen months following the date of delivery , be entitled to two additional breaks each day for this purpose , neither of which shall exceed half an hour (30 minutes each). Most of the companies do let you combine each 30 minutes into an hour an reduce the working hours by 1 hour per day for the first 18 months after rejoining work.
These two additional periods (1 hour daily) shall be considered as working hours and shall not cause any reduction of remuneration.
Whereas, the public sector initial maternity leave allowance is 60 days with full pay initially and with a further allowance of 100 days of un-remunerated leave thereafter.
It is essential for a mother to bond with her newborn for a longer time after birth. The child needs quality care, feeding and attention by the mother.
Ministry of Labour should consider at least 90 paid leave as maternity leave to woman to be able to bond with their newborn as is a practice is many western countries.
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