Males working in the UAE’s private sector can avail of a five-day paid paternity leave to take care of their newborns, it was announced on Sunday. The President, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has approved a decree to this effect, making the UAE the first Arab country to grant private sector employees paternity leave.
Staff of private firms can avail of the paternity leave within six months of the child’s birth. Currently, government employees are granted a three-day paternity leave. It’s not immediately clear if the latest decree increases their paternity leave period.
Female employees of the private sector get a 45-day maternity leave. After delivery, they are entitled to two 30-minute additional breaks daily for nursing their newborns for 18 months.
According to the official UAE government website, women working in the federal government are entitled to 90 days of maternity leave. At the end of this period, they can take two hours off work to nurse their newborns. Abu Dhabi government employees get a similar maternity leave.
Dubai and Sharjah government employees get 90 days of maternity leave, with the option to add 30 days of unpaid leave to it.