Empowering women with elective egg freezing, increased leadership representation: White Paper on Women’s Development
25 action plans to support women were developed through feedback and ideas gathered from the Government and community.
The Government submitted a White Paper on women’s development to Parliament on Mar 28, with recommendations for creating a fairer and more inclusive society for women.
The White Paper contains 25 action plans to support women’s aspirations and address the challenges they face. They span several areas including workplace equality and protection against violence and are set to take place over the next decade.
The action plans were developed through feedback and ideas from the Government and community, after a series of Conversations on Singapore Women’s Development held by the Government in 2021. There were 160 conversations and over 6000 participants.
One of the action plans allows women between the ages of 21 to 35 to choose to undergo elective egg freezing regardless of their marital status.
This is not to diminish the importance of early family planning, but to empower women with choice and respect those who may choose to preserve their fertility due to personal circumstances, said the White Paper.
Under workplace equality, the action plans include new workplace fairness legislations, revised Flexible Work Arrangement guidelines to allow women to participate more fully in the workplace, and moves to better support women’s representation in leadership roles.
In implementing these plans, the Government strives to provide both men and women with equal opportunities in the workplace and empower women to pursue their career ambitions.
“We strongly oppose unfair employment practices and discrimination of all forms – including against women,” stated the White Paper.
Women should also receive better protection from violence and harm, with increased penalties for sexual offences and enhanced support for victims of family violence.
To accomplish the latter, one of the planned measures is to enhance the family violence response framework to help victims with immediate safety risks to get help more easily.
Overall, the Government stressed the importance of identifying and overcoming persistent gender stereotypes and unhelpful mindsets in increasing the effectiveness of the action plans.
“Underpinning policy and legislative changes are mindset shifts on gender stereotypes, which require a whole-of-society effort. We must continue to change mindsets towards a fairer and more inclusive society,” noted the White Paper.
The 25 action plans and the full White Paper can be viewed here.