Pristina, 19 December 2017 – Democracy for Development Institute launched the paper “Shifting paradigms – Equity through parental leave”.
Ardiana Gashi, a member of the D4D board, said that the economic development of the state is achieved by offering equal opportunities for men and women. The current maternity leave system is discriminatory not only in terms of not allowing men to participate in children’s life but as such brings economic consequences by discouraging women from seeking employment. Vesel Makolli, Deputy Minister of Labor and Social Welfare, said that the well-being of children requires the presence of both parents. The new labor law, which will be amended, will also create new provisions on parental leave- provisions that will be in line with EU directives. On the other hand Visar Gorani – Gashi from the Swedish Embassy in Prishtina said that developmental changes and existing legislation are evident and progressive in Kosovo, but still need to be reflected in social and family relations.
Research findings have shown that men in Kosovo are willing to take parental leave when this opportunity is offered and especially after the sixth month. This model is a scheme of parental leave where 4 months are allocated to the mother as maternity leave – 70% of her base salary; 1 month is allocated to the father as paternity leave- 70% of his base salary. In addition, the family gets 8 months parental leave, out of which four months are allocated to the mother. Two months of parental leave for the mother are covered at a rate of 50% of the country’s average salary by the state and two months are unpaid. The remaining four months are allocated to the father. Two months of parental leave for the father are covered at a rate of 50% of the country’s average salary by the state and two months are unpaid. In this scheme the family gets a total of 9 months paid leave and 5 months of unpaid leave.
Temporarily D4D, proposes that maternity and paternity leave be covered by employers. Once the health insurance fund is active and functional, costs of the maternity and paternity leave should be covered by this fund. Parental leave on that case would then be covered by the state. Thus maternity leave, paternity and parental leave and care should be treated as collective responsibility.
D4D Institute, also awarded prizes for fathers of the year who are examples of equal sharing of responsibilities with their partners: Arben Brovina, Musa Sahiti, Besnik Salihu and Pajtim Smolica. While the company of the year promoting the paternity leave was declared Baruti GmBH.