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La Ligue des Familles says new Belgium federal government law complicates parents’ lives

The Belgium family association La Ligue des Familles says the so-called Peeters law will have a negative impact on family life.  The law aims to provide more flexibility and competitiveness by allowing employees to increase working hours during busy periods with the potential of accumulating holiday leave, which can be exchanged with colleagues within the same company.

La Ligue des familles states that the move is counterproductive for families and will entrench inequalities for a series of reasons.  First of all, an increase in the working week will make it even more difficult for families to cope, especially single parents.  Schools and creches are also unable to accommodate these flexible working arrangements.  La Ligue states that the law unfairly targets women as figures in the Netherlands show that men tend to take the accumulated leave at the end of their careers whilst women use it for care giving duties, especially when children are young.

The Belgium family association says it will continue to promote work-life balance and gender equality by pushing for compulsory paternity leave and an improvement of parental leave. It says the law goes in the opposite direction.