Study on creating an environment where it is easy for men to take childcare leave The Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare October 10 at 6:37 a.m.
While the percentage of men who took childcare leave remained low, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare began to consider creating an environment that is easy to acquire, such as procedures that are easy to take a day off immediately after childbirth and an expansion of split acquisitions that are up to two times.
According to the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, among those who were able to take childcare leave as of October last year, the percentage of people who actually obtained childcare leave was 7.48% for men, compared with 83% for women.
Based on this situation, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare has started a study to create an environment where it is easy for men to take childcare leave at a council that makes it possible for men to take childcare leave, such as by representatives of labor and management.
Specifically, we will discuss procedures that are easy for women to take a day off immediately after childbirth, whether to increase the number of split acquisitions that are approved for the second time if the first time is acquired within eight weeks of childbirth, and whether companies are required to explain the system of childcare leave to workers.
We are also considering ways to encourage companies to disclose the rate of childcare leave.
The Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare has decided to revise the necessary law once labor-management discussions are settled.
Percentage of men taking childcare leave continues at low levels
According to the law, employees can take childcare leave by applying to the company at least one month in advance if they wish to take leave.
As a general rule, it is possible to acquire a child once by the age of one year old, but for men, if the first time is acquired and finished within 8 weeks, a special case of the split acquisition that can be acquired for the second time if the condition is met is permitted.
In addition, during childcare leave, when wages are significantly reduced, 67% of wages will be paid for six months from the start, and 50% of wages will be paid after 6 months.
In addition, you will be exempted from paying social insurance premiums.
However, according to the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, the acquisition rate of men remained at 7.48% last year, and the acquisition period tends to be short, with 80% less than one month.
The government has set a target of 13% for men taking childcare leave and 30% by five years, but this is lower than that.
The reasons for not taking childcare leave are that there are voices such as “the company does not have a childcare leave system in place,” “I don’t want to reduce my income,” and “It was a difficult atmosphere for me to get a job,” as well as some people who are busy with their work or who can leave their jobs when they are absent.
Many small and medium-sized enterprises are cautious about “mandatory”
Childcare leave is to be approved by companies in response to an offer from workers, but many small and medium-sized enterprises are cautious about making it mandatory to take childcare leave.
The Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry conducted a survey of 6007 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) nationwide from July to August regarding the active participation of diverse human resources, and obtained responses from 2939 companies, 48.9% of which are members.
Among these, when asked about initiatives related to the active participation of female employees, 81.5% said they were promoting them, and 12% said they were not promoting them.
When asked about the “mandatory” of male employees taking childcare leave, 22.3% opposed it, 48.6% opposed it, and more than 70% opposed it, while 6.7% opposed it and 20.6% were rather in favor.
Industries with the highest percentage of opposition to “mandatory” were 81.5% in the transportation industry, followed by 74.6% in the construction industry and 74.5% in nursing and nursing, mainly due to the serious labor shortage and the difficulty of securing alternative manpower.
Tomonori Sugisaki of the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, who conducted the survey, said, “Many small and medium-sized enterprises recognize the importance of an environment where work and child-rearing can be compatible, but I think they will be cautious about “mandatory” in the face of serious labor shortages. There are many men who take paid leave instead of childcare leave, and in order for men to take more childcare leave, it may be necessary to foster national momentum and policies for companies.”
Some companies have a 100% ratio of male employees taking childcare leave.
Sakata Manufacturing Co., Ltd., a building parts manufacturer in Nagaoka City, Niigata Prefecture, has acquired all male employees who have wanted childcare leave since the day before yesterday.
Three years ago, when we received a consultation from a male employee that we wanted to take childcare leave, we have promoted the creation of an environment that is easy for the company to take childcare leave.
In order to reduce overtime work, the company is actively engaged in “workshare” in which each employee acquires work skills in multiple fields, and it is possible to respond without problems even if there are vacancies for employees due to childcare leave.
In addition, as a result of simulating and showing the amount of take-home payments that vary depending on the time and duration of childcare leave, and early planning to set up a support system even if there are vacancies due to childcare leave, all 11 male employees who wanted to take childcare leave from the day before yesterday were able to take childcare leave. The person who had been closed for the longest period was 23 days.
Masafumi Ohira, 29, who took childcare leave for 18 days five months after giving birth in June, said, “At first I didn’t know about the childcare leave system, and I was worried, but after the company taught me about the system carefully, I was able to take a day off with peace of mind because it was a situation where other employees would cover my work even if I was absent. It was good that I was able to take care of children that I usually can’t do easily.”
As a general rule, the current childcare leave system allows employees to take leave for up to one year, so the company aims to create a system that does not interfere with business even if male employees take leave for one year.
Takumi Sakata, president of Sakata Manufacturing Co., Ltd., said, “In the future, we will consider the following themes: follow-up systems in case there are employees who want to take longer childcare leave, and the creation of an environment when they return to work. Childcare leave is a topic of conversation in the world, but I think we should let them take it freely because it is a natural right.”