The EU Mutual Learning Programme in Gender Equality. Instruments to foster long-term paternal involvement in family work. Comments Paper - Portugal
This mutual learning seminar was hosted by the German government on the 4th and 5th October 2018 in Berlin. It explored approaches to promoting long-term paternal involvement in family work with a particular focus on parental leave arrangements. Good practices from Germany were presented and reviewed.
Representatives and experts attended from Germany, Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Iceland, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Sweden and the UK. The European Commission and the European Institute for Gender Equality also participated.
The seminar was opened by Dr. Birgit Schweikert, Head of the Directorate for Gender Equality, German Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth and by Halliki Voolma and Fabian Lütz from the European Commission.
The European Commission highlighted the significant gap between the aspirations expressed by mothers and fathers in relation to the management of their caring and family responsibilities and the reality of their current practice. The 2017 Eurobarometer found that 80% of men think that gender equality is important for them personally. However, women spend on average 21 hours per week on care and household activities, whereas men spend 9 hours. 84% of Europeans approve of a man doing an equal share of household activities and taking parental leave to care for his children. However, only 33% of men took/thought about taking paternity leave according to the 2018 Eurobarometer.