Beijing calls for family leave to show filial piety
Employers in Beijing are being encouraged to give staff more time off to visit their elderly relatives as the government aims to build a senior-friendly city.
According to a plan passed by Beijing policymakers recently on improving seniors’ lives in the 13th Five-Year Plan period (2016-2020), vacation time would be given to visit elderly family members on their birthdays or on Chongyang Festival, a festival for senior citizens, or when senior relatives are in need of rehabilitative service or terminal care.
The plan did not specify how to calculate salary during the leave.
According to a regulation issued by the State Council in 1981, employees of government departments or public institutions are entitled to a 24-day family leave every four years if they do not live in the same place with their spouse or parents. An employee who takes the family leave can still receive their basic wage, but their performance pay will be affected.
Half the senior population in China, more than 100 million people, are empty nesters aged 60 or older whose children have left home, government figures show.
People’s Park in downtown Shanghai has become the setting for a matchmaking market as parents place umbrellas, each carrying sheets of paper containing information about their unmarried children. On a recent Saturday afternoon, more than 500 middle-aged people and seniors packed into a corner of the park in an attempt to find partners for their unattached 30-something children.