Having specified in his speech at the session which addressed “To a Better Work-Family Balance” at the Third International Women and Justice Summit, that the work-family balance is a dynamic issue, Dr. Fred Deven stated “It is a process which continues for the lifetime. Mother and father must ensure this balance for their lifetime.
At the parallel sessions organized within the scope of the Summit, the developments in different areas for the purpose of strengthening the family, successful examples and the determinations and solution offered in relation to ongoing problems were discussed.
The session addressing “To a Better Work-Family Balance” was moderated by Assoc. Prof. Dr. E. Sare Aydın Yılmaz, the Founding President of KADEM and Istanbul Parliamentarian of Ak Party. Having specified that the work-family balance is not a responsibility to be assumed by only one person, Yılmaz stated “the state, employers and all the family members have responsibilities”.
Maternity leave must be no less than 14 weeks
Researcher Ahmed Mohamed Aref stated that the conflicts between family and work commitments could harm the family. Having specified that fertility is affected adversely by business life, Aref stated “Flexible working hours and maternity leave assist mothers in this respect. Work-family equilibrium policies assume significant responsibilities in this regard Flexible working options, leaves and child benefits assist mothers. This equilibrium must also include the individual needs such as education and social activities. Working women must take a maternity leave of not less than 14 weeks. At this stage, Qatar Foundation is working on broadening the scope of maternity leave”.
Number of undergraduate women in Turkey has increased in the last 10 years
Economist Dr. Willem Adema stated: “We see that, as the children grow, contribution of women to employment decreases. The rate of undergraduate women in Turkey has increased in the last 10 years.”
All the stakeholders must come together
Having specified that the work-family balance is a dynamic issue, Dr. Fred Deven stated “It is a process which continues for the lifetime. Mother and father must ensure this balance for their lifetime. Families have similar characteristics in many cultures and continents. In the equilibrium between work and family, we must take into consideration different players and stakeholders. Important players in this issue are public authorities, employers, unions, media and non-governmental organizations. They are playing a significant role in the work-family equilibrium with their favorable or unfavorable decisions. Other players are the scientific community, those working at family centers and the family itself. There is not a single solution for everybody. All the stakeholders must come together in this respect. Policies which focus on family union must be implemented”.
Women and men must cooperate
Having specified that women work too much in Portugal, Dr. Margarida Gonçalves Neto stated “Working is a part of our culture. When we look at the statistics, we see that the rate of Portuguese women who work is the highest in Europe. They know what they want, they have new demands. They are making new demands in order to establish the work-family balance. Women are also working at home for 4 hours. 52 percent of women say that it is difficult to work at home after work. They specify that they are unable to set aside time for themselves. They already know what they will do when they come home. I believe that the balance between work and family can be established by the cooperation between both women and men. This balance can be established when both women and men perform their duty.”