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Of male central government employees who plan to take paternity leave for their children born between April and June, 85.2 percent intend to be off work for at least a month, the government said Friday.

The government released such data for the first time since it launched in fiscal 2020 an initiative to have managers in central government create child care leave plans for their male subordinates based on their wishes.

According to the Cabinet Bureau of Personnel Affairs, paternity leave plans were drawn up for 3,030 male national public servants whose wives gave birth to their children between April and June. Of such workers, 2,582 are planning to take leave of one month or longer in total. The average length of their planned leave stood at 43 days.

The government plans to urge ministries and agencies to make sure that their employees can take leave as planned.

As only 12.4 percent of eligible male national public servants took paternity leave in fiscal 2018 and many of the leave takers were off for one month or less, the government decided to introduce the initiative in fiscal 2020 to allow more male workers to take longer leave, in hopes of creating a work environment friendly for employees raising children.

“In order to allow male workers to get more involved in child rearing, the government will steadily work on encouraging them to take days off or take longer leave for child care,” national civil service reform minister Ryota Takeda told a news conference Friday.

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