The integration of work and parenting: a comparative legal analysis

Rossouw, Elzaan (2018-03)

Thesis (LLD)--Stellenbosch University, 2018.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT : Given the importance of parental care to children, parents and broader society and the apparent conflict between work and adequate parental care, this study evaluates the legal facilitation of the integration of work and care across nine countries, including South Africa. The study recognises that legal operationalisation of the integration of work and care primarily takes place at domestic legislative level and shows that this happens against the backdrop of widespread recognition of the importance of the family and care at the international, regional and constitutional levels. The study builds on the reality that domestic legislation in this context consists of (a combination of) equality law and specific rights contained in employment standards legislation. The comparative review of equality law as applied in the area of the work-care conflict shows that, despite the potential and promise that equality law holds to facilitate the integration of work and care, this potential has not been realised and probably will not be in future. This necessarily shifts the focus to an approach founded on the extension of specific rights related to time off or leave, as well as flexible working, to employees in order to enable them effectively to combine work and caregiving. The comparative review of specific rights in this area leads to the conclusion that South Africa lags far behind certain developed and comparable developing countries in its legislative recognition of the importance of caregiving and in its subsequent level of employment rights extended to caregivers. Given the ample room for improvement, suggestions for legislative reform are made based on the comparative experience of other countries

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING : Gegewe die belangrikheid van ouerlike sorg vir kinders, ouers en die breë gemeenskap, asook die oënskynlike konflik tussen werk en voldoende ouerlike sorg, evalueer hierdie studie die regsfasilitering van die integrasie van werk en sorg in nege lande, insluitend Suid-Afrika. Hierdie studie dui aan dat die regsoperasionalisering van die integrasie van werk en sorg primêr op individuele basis in verskillende lande plaasvind, en wys dat dit gebeur teen die agtergrond van wydverspreide erkenning van die belang van die familie en sorg op internasionale-, streek- en grondwetlike vlakke. Hierdie studie bou op die realiteit dat wetgewing in hierdie konteks bestaan uit (‘n kombinasie van) gelykheidswetgewing en spesifieke regte vervat in wetgewing gemik op die verbetering van indiensnemingstandaarde. Die vergelykende oorsig van gelykheidswetgewing, soos toegepas in die area van werk-sorg konflik, toon dat, ten spyte van die potensiaal en belofte wat gelykheidswetgewing inhou om die integrasie van werk en sorg te fasiliteer, hierdie potensiaal nog nie gerealiseer het nie en moontlik ook nie in die toekoms gaan gebeur nie. Die fokus skuif dus noodwendig na ‘n benadering gegrond op die uitbreiding van spesifieke regte verbonde aan vrye tyd of verlof, asook fleksi-werk, om werknemers in staat te stel om werk en sorg effektief te kombineer. Die vergelykende oorsig van spesifieke regte in hierdie area lei tot die gevolgtrekking dat Suid-Afrika ver agter sommige ontwikkelde en vergelykbare ontwikkelende lande is vir sover dit wetlike erkenning van die belang van sorg en die vlak van indiensnemingsregte verleen aan versorgers, betref. Gegewe dat daar beduidende ruimte vir verbetering bestaan, word voorstelle vir wetgewende hervorming gemaak wat gebaseer is op die ervarings van ander lande.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/103776
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