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Singapore Airlines says pregnant cabin crew may choose to work temporary ground jobs

Singapore Airlines says pregnant cabin crew may choose to work temporary ground jobs

Singapore Airlines stewardesses walk along the transit hall of Singapore Changi Airport terminal in Singapore on Jan 14, 2021. (Photo: AFP/Roslan Rahman)

SINGAPORE: Singapore Airlines (SIA) stewardesses who are pregnant can now take on ground jobs up until they give birth, in a departure from the previous practice of having to quit flying for the carrier.

An SIA spokesperson on Monday (Oct 10) said that cabin crew who are expecting may choose to work in temporary ground attachments from the time they declare their pregnancy, till before delivery. 

This may range between a minimum of three months to nine months, said the spokesperson, adding that SIA "supports our cabin crew during and after their pregnancy".

After giving birth and taking their maternity leave, cabin crew will be able to resume their flying duties, according to the SIA statement sent to CNA.

"We continue to work hard to retain our talented people, and invest in them, so that they can deliver the world-class service that SIA is renowned for," said the airline's spokesperson. 

The Straits Times on Monday reported that the move - in place since July - stops SIA's "longstanding practice of effectively ending cabin crew's contracts when they are with child". 

In 2010, the daily broadsheet noted that unlike most other carriers, SIA asks its flight attendants to leave the company after their first trimester of pregnancy - unless they can secure ground jobs, which were difficult to get.

In lieu of maternity benefits, pregnant cabin crew would receive an ex-gratia payment amounting to two months of their basic salary when they resigned, according to the Straits Times in 2010.

Source: CNA/lk(jo)

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