Career Women Face Increased Pressure in Balancing Work, Child Raising

August 1, 2017
By Li XueyaoEditor: Hewater Liu

Since the universal second-child policy officially took effect in January 2016, Chinese career women have had to strike a balance in the completion of both household chores and duties at their workplaces. Many women have experienced a great deal of physical and mental pressure in the process, according to the latest study.

The report, released by, a China-based recruitment website, says nearly one third (29.39 percent) of women surveyed said that they have no intention to get pregnant at the moment, while another 18.53 percent disclosed that they will opt to become a full-time mom in the future. The majority of the rest of them have already had at least one child.

As for factors that are likely to have an adverse impact upon their career during the pregnancy and maternity leave, women polled cited the following concerns: replacement by others (68.23 percent); barriers in getting promoted and applying for higher salaries (56.89 percent); the hurdle to make a comeback after childbearing (53.18 percent); depreciation of personal values (50.73 percent); and, the decline of personal efficiency at work (43.68 percent).

Nowadays, women have enjoyed extended maternity leave in 30 provincial-level regions across the entire country, and the paternal leave ranges from two weeks to a month in different regions.

Moreover, existing laws and regulations stipulate that pregnant women and women with newborns should enjoy additional benefits such as one-hour breastfeeding leave per day, no overtime and night shifts, protection from the unlawful termination of a labor contract, and easy access to breastfeeding rooms.

However, the same survey indicated that a majority of women have no access to these welfare at their workplaces.

Therefore, women are encouraged to fight for their legal rights and interests if there is any violation of the above-mentioned rules.

For instance, they can lodge a complaint, tip-off or appeal to the arbitration authorities if their employers fail to grant them maternity leave in accordance with the Special Provisions on Labor Protection of Female Employees. Moreover, women involved can file a lawsuit in courts if they are dissatisfied with a previous arbitration verdict.

Meanwhile, the Law on Employment Contracts rules that if an employer illegally terminates or ends a labor contract, the affected employee can demand continual performance of such a contract from bosses if they choose.

In addition, employers shall pay financial damages to employees if they do not demand a resumption of the contract or if the continued functioning of the contract has become impossible.

(Source: and edited by Women of China)

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