More Dutch fathers take paternity leave

613px-Father_with_child
. Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Barbara Mürdter

Over the past 10 years the number of new fathers in the Netherlands who take paternity leave doubled. Despite this, it is still only 11 percent of new dads that take time off work to care for their kids, according to the Emancipation Monitor 2016 published by Statistics Netherlands and social and cultural planning office SCP on Tuesday, the Volkskrant reports.

According to the researchers, this increase in fathers taking paternity lave can be mostly attributed to the younger generation. Young mothers now less often work less after the birth of a child than before. 

About half of young fathers look after the child "at any time of the week" while the mother is at work. A third of these fathers do this for an entire day, 10 percent do it for half a day. And another 10 percent even care for their kids more than one day a week. Some fathers look after the kids at night while the mother is working. Others are able to work flexible hours, such as four 9 hour days, or work from home.

Despite this progress, one in six Dutch still think that women should stay at home with the kids until they go to school, the researchers found. This is also reflected in choices made in practice, SCP researcher Wil Portegijs said to the newspaper. "This generation of mothers today is better educated than the fathers, but it's mostly still mothers that take parental leave. They almost all have one mommy day a week. In economic terms, this is not so convenient."

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