A group of women are organizing a protest march on the Legislative Assembly for Friday, January 18, to persuade legislators to extend maternity leave to six months.

156135_lactancia-gThe group says that six months is the mininum that an infant requires maternal care, that includes breastfeeding.

Protestors will be gathering at the Parque Central in the centre of San José and starting at 10am will march the few blocks to the Legislative Assembly where their message will be delivered.

Currently, Costa Rica allows for four months Maternity leave: one month prior to birth and three months after birth of the baby. The employer has to pay 50% of the salary for all the four months of leave, with the other half paid for by the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS) – Social Security.

Terminating the services of a pregnant woman can invite serious legal trouble. An employer would have to pay regular wages from the date of dismissal from service to the eighth month of pregnancy to a pregnant woman who has been fired. This is the very least. Compensation to be paid may be higher as decided in court in such cases.


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