Phobia of maternity leaves: sources, threats and forms of protest

The Consortium developed and released the book "Phobia of maternity leaves: sources, threats and forms of protest». This small book was developed under the Project of the Coalition for protecting the rights of pregnant women and mothers of underage children”, which was implemented for about a year (2011-2012) by the Consortium pf women’s NGOs together with two human rights organizations - autonomous public organization “Center for social and legal rights” (Moscow) and Society for promoting social protection of citizens “Petersburg “Egida”. The Project’s main goal was to make visible and evident for the authorities – RF President as a guarantor of the acting Constitution, RF Ministry of health care and social development in charge of the social and humanitarian spheres of public life, the Prosecutor’s Office and courts of all levels the problems of women’s discrimination in labor and employment, which recently has manifested itself most vividly in mass violations of the rights of pregnant women and mothers of underage children. We also intended to prove by way of publications in mass media and public events that the existing practice of violating the rights of pregnant women and mothers of underage children contradicts the RF Constitution, RF Labor and Criminal codes that protect women’s labor rights, as well as the officially proclaimed national strategy towards overcoming the demographic crisis in Russia. In order to rectify the situation, we planned to outline approaches and develop recommendations for practical improvement of the current legal norms aimed at protecting the rights of pregnant women and mothers of underage children (specifically, as related to insurance and payment of maternity allowances and allowances for the upkeep of underage children).
The Project implementation envisaged a series of expert seminars in order to develop analytical approaches to the problem, as well as processing the actual data, which served as justification of its social significance. The formed the basis of the book, which includes two parts – analytical and documentary.

Our book describes the difficult, but positive experience of interaction of women and human rights’ NGOs with executive and legislative authorities, and demonstrates that the constructive stance of both parties allows for a dialogue aimed at practical solution of acute social problems.