Fathers in Singapore have appealed to Minister of State Josephine Teo that they face disapproval and poor performance ratings from their employers if they were to take paternity leaves on top of National Service reservist training.
Currently under the manpower law, Singapore fathers are entitled to one week gazetted paternity leave in order to promote family time with their children. In the civil service, employees are entitled to two weeks of paternity leaves. However in the private sector, some employers threaten their employees with poor performance appraisal and even their job security if they take paternity leaves.
Singaporeans currently work the longest hours in the world clocking over 2,389.4 hours in a year. Birth rate in Singapore is also the lowest in the world at 1.25 (2014 figures) and their nearest “competitor” is Japan at 1.40 (2014 figures). However despite falling birth rate, Singapore’s infrastructures are buckling under overpopulation triggered by the influx of foreigners, which was a method adopted by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to increase GDP growth without increasing workforce productivity.
Unlike in the past, Singaporeans’ job security and wages are lower as the local workforce face intense job competition from foreigners with unaccredited bachelor degrees, mainly from 3rd world countries like China, India and Philippines.