Mobilization for the implementation of family friendly workplaces in the Republic of Moldova
19 November 2021
- Family-friendly practices implemented by international companies or how to certify family-friendly companies are just some of the topics discussed by representatives of Moldovan private sector, international companies and Parliament and Government officials at the Conference on the role of the private sector in promoting family-friendly policies, organized by UNFPA Moldova, with the financial support of the Austrian Development Agency, in partnership with the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Various models of company certification from the perspective of family-friendly policies, as well as the advantages of such certification for businesses were presented by the Masfamilia Foundation, from Spain, by the Ekvilib Institute, which has a fifteen-year experience of companies’ certification in Slovenia, and by the Ministry of Social Affairs from Estonia.
"This event marks the culmination of efforts done this year to bring solutions so that more private companies can get involved in supporting women and men employees," said Nigina Abaszada, UNFPA Moldova Resident Representative.
"The state has an obligation to create incentives for men so that they get more involved in raising children and household chores. We need to counter gender stereotypes, reinforced by existing practices and regulations. Only 25% of children under the age of three are enrolled in nurseries, therefore we need to create partnerships with the private sector to open more nurseries and facilitate the return of parents to work. The Parliament is also very open – and I am sure so is the Government too – to advance on an agenda with firm commitments", said Dan Perciun, Chair of the Parliamentary Commission for Social Protection, Health and Family.
The President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Moldova and representatives of relevant agencies spoke about the degree of business readiness for the implementation of family-friendly policies, as well as the actions taken jointly with the authorities. In this context, the commitment of the authorities and the private sector to support women in achieving career aspirations and supporting men in achieving parental aspirations was discussed by representatives of the champion companies of the Republic of Moldova, Orange, Premier Energy Distribution, Asena textil, Panilino. They presented their experience in developing family-friendly workplaces within a year of starting the project. Employee support models and strengths were also shared by representatives of several international companies such as Johnson & Johnson, Innate Motion, the International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, and international expert Tiina Bruno, CEO Föräldrasmart Sverige AB .
"Expanding choices: gender responsive family policies for the private sector in western Balkans and Moldova", is an initiative that aims to raise awareness, knowledge, ideas, strategies and tools for private sector companies, Governments and society as a whole. A series of webinars with the participation of international companies were organized in 2021 for businesses representatives from the Republic of Moldova, also an audit was made of national companies that are committed to promoting family-friendly workplaces and formulated recommendations for adjusting practices and increase support for employees. At the same time, analysis of legislation was made, including from European Union perspective and solutions to adjust national regulations were presented.
The conference on the role of the private sector in promoting family-friendly policies was organized as part of the project "Expanding choices: gender responsive family policies for the private sector in western Balkans and Moldova", funded by the Austrian Development Agency (ADA) and implemented by UNFPA in partnership with the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry. These actions support systemic interventions in the country in response to demographic changes, helping families / couples to achieve desired number of children through policies that facilitate the work and life balance.