By Elijah Felice Rosales, March 20 2019; Business Mirror

Image Credit to Philippine Daily Inquirer

THE new law on maternity leave will affect management decisions in hiring women, as it is seen to take a toll on the productivity of businesses, according to a study by the Employers Confederation of the Philippines (Ecop).

Based on preliminary Ecop figures, 68 percent of businesses said their recruitment of women will be affected by Republic Act 11210, or the 105-Day Expanded Maternity Leave Law. Under the law, all working mothers in the government and the private sector are guaranteed 105 days of paid maternity leave credits, with seven days transferable to fathers.

Firms who said their hiring of women will change fear the law will compromise the productivity of their operations.

Some small enterprises dominated by female employees are also expected to be adversely affected, the survey claimed. It added that the law puts higher cost implications on benefits and the cost of hiring and training a temporary replacement.

On the other hand, those whose hiring will not in any way be affected said they value equal employment opportunity in their workplace, as well as gender equality within their labor force.


They also argued that qualifications—and not gender—should be the basis in employing. Further, they said “women are more organized, more detail oriented and generally more reliable” in the workplace than men.

Scoring the cost impact of the law to their operations, on a scale of 1 being very minimal to 5 being very substantial, the survey reported 3.63 was the average score.

The Ecop on Tuesday presented the preliminary results of the survey to the business and labor sectors.

The group is obtaining inputs from firms to measure perception of the law and its possible impact to their operations.  The preliminary results covered the insights of 70 businesses, of which 51 percent are large scale, according to Ecop.

President Duterte in February signed into law the expansion of leave benefits for working mothers. On top of the 105 days of paid maternity leave, an additional 15 days of paid leave are granted to single mothers under the law.