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Maternity and paternity leave in the EU
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Maternity leave children


 - Maternity leave children
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Providing 20 weeks of maternity leave has nothing to do with a return to the ideal of "stay-at-home-mum". 20 weeks are rather a time frame set by international standards. 

World Health Organization recommends babies be breastfed for the first six months. Experts stress that while milk can be expressed at a later stage, breast feeding in the first months provides positives other than the actual content of the milk, such as bonding and security.

‘This time span comes closer to giving women the choice of following international standards on breastfeeding, and more generally empowers women to take as much time to recuperate as they choose to after giving birth, and does not curtail their chances on the labour market’, says Myria Vassiliadou from the EWL.

In addition, research has shown that the opportunity for women to breast-feed for longer cuts healthcare costs for both mother and child.


Shila Meyer Behjat
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