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Increasing Women's Participation in Public Life
 
What we wanted
To recognize recognize agricultural workers' right to social security
To offer Lebanese farmers services usually unavailable to them
To provide Lebanese women with an opportunity to contribute to their communities
How we did it
Based on the achievements of a previous DCA (DanChurchAid) project, supported by Kvinfo and implemented by PCDD as a consultant, DCA decided to follow-up a new project aimed at preparing an Advocacy Campaign to improve maternity leave laws in Lebanon.

The Lebanese women strongly demanded the unification of the maternity leave within all the various sectors within the country; for the maternity leave as it stood before the advocacy campaign was offered as follows: the public sector offered 2 months, the private sector offered 49 days and the education sector offered 2 months and a half. It is worth noting that weekends and holidays were counted as leave days within these various periods.
Furthermore, there was a strong demand that the maternity leave be paid by "The Maternity and Sickness Fund" and not by
the employer, who in many cases decreased the number of leave days or the money paid for the woman throughout the
duration of her maternity leave.
The participants organized an advocacy campaign, and consequently had to carry out an in-depth comparison study between the laws practiced in
 
neighboring countries as well as the ones decreed by international agreements. In addition, numerous interviews were organized with various officials and the issue was discussed with the working women to make them aware of their rights. A public opinion poll among pregnant working women was also conducted regarding what they considered to be the most suitable solution for this problem.
Accomplishments
In a meeting on May 16, 2011, the legal and judicial parliamentarian committees voted to increase maternity pay to
100 percent of the mother's salary, from the current two thirds of pay, and to standardize the period of maternity leave to 10 weeks; a great achievement for all women rights activists!