Tag Archives: maternity

New FIFA rules to protect female players’ maternity rights

Female soccer players should soon get their maternity rights protected under new employment rules announced Thursday by FIFA.

The governing body of soccer is preparing to mandate clubs to allow at least 14 weeks of maternity leave paid at a minimum two-thirds of a player’s full salary. National soccer bodies can insist on more generous terms.

“Her club will be under an obligation to reintegrate her into football activity and provide adequate ongoing medical support,” FIFA said.

Any club that ended a player’s contract for becoming pregnant faces having to pay compensation and a fine, and being banned from the transfer market for one year.

“The idea is to protect female players before, during and after childbirth,” FIFA chief legal officer Emilio Garcia said on a conference call.

The move is seen as a key step in professionalizing women’s soccer — and respecting players’ family lives — after a successful 2019 World Cup and more investment by elite clubs in having a women’s team.

United States forward Alex Morgan, a World Cup winner last year, signed with Tottenham in September, four months after giving birth to her first child. She played her first game this month.

The rules are expected to be approved by the FIFA Council next month and would take effect on Jan. 1.

Although FIFA’s judicial bodies have not been presented with contract disputes over maternity rights, Garcia targeted getting ahead of potential problems in the fast-growing women’s game.

“We think these rules are part of common sense,” he said of the move, which follow International Labor Organization standards on compensating maternity leave.

At least eight weeks of the 14-week minimum maternity leave must be after the player gives birth.

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CBC | Soccer News

Taliban kill 5, claim retaliation for being blamed in Kabul maternity hospital attack

A suicide bombing in Afghanistan’s eastern Paktia province on Thursday that looked to target a military compound but exploded before its destination killed five civilians and wounded at least 29 others, including civilians and military personnel, Afghan officials said.

The Taliban took responsibility for the bombing, calling it retaliation for statements by President Ashraf Ghani blaming the Taliban for an attack earlier this week against a maternity hospital in Kabul that killed 24 people, including two newborns as well as several mothers and nurses.

The Taliban was quick to deny responsibility and condemn that attack on Tuesday.

The U.S. special peace envoy, Zalmay Khalilzad, said Thursday that the U.S. had assessed that the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) affiliate operating in Afghanistan conducted the hospital attack. 

“Rather than falling into the ISIS trap and delay peace or create obstacles, Afghans must come together to crush this menace and pursue a historic peace opportunity,” he said on Twitter.

The Taliban and ISIS are rivals. Afghan and American officials say the ISIS affiliate in Afghanistan has been weakened in recent months as a result of U.S. bombing raids in the group’s stronghold, as well as military operations by Afghan security forces and attacks by Taliban insurgents.


An Afghan woman looks for her relative at a hospital that came under attack Tuesday in Kabul. (Omar Sobhanié/Reuters)

ISIS has not taken responsibility for the maternity ward attack but the hospital is located in the Shia-dominated Dasht-e-Barschi area of the Afghan capital, where ISIS has carried out several bloody attacks including one in 2018 that killed dozens of young students taking university entrance exams.

The ISIS affiliate declared war on Afghanistan’s minority Shias several years ago. It did take responsibility for another bombing on Tuesday in the eastern Nangarhar province that targeted the funeral of a pro-government warlord that killed 32 people.

President targets Taliban, doesn’t mention ISIS

In his speech following Tuesday’s dual attacks, Ghani did not mention ISIS but said he was ordering an all-out offensive against the Taliban.

Khalilzad brokered a peace agreement between the U.S. and the Taliban in February to allow U.S. and NATO troops to leave Afghanistan. It was seen at the time as Afghanistan’s best chance at peace after decades of war but the government has since been consumed with political turmoil. Ghani and his rival Abdullah Abdullah have both declared themselves winners of last year’s presidential polls and both declared themselves president of the country.

Meanwhile, Khalilzad has been pressing the Taliban to agree to a reduction in violence. Since the deal, they have continued attacking government security forces but since refrained from attacking U.S. or NATO troops, who often come to the aid of embattled Afghans.

WATCH | Deadly attack on Afghanistan hospital damages hope for peace: 

A horrific attack on a hospital maternity ward in Kabul that killed at least two dozen people has prompted outrage around the world, and decimated hopes for the peace process in Afghanistan.  2:02

The U.S. has been trying to get the Taliban and the Afghan government to start negotiations, which have been held up as both sides squabble over a promised release of each other’s prisoners.

Last week, Khalilzad met with the Taliban at their political office in Qatar. He also travelled to Pakistan and neighbouring India seeking their support for the peace deal and a quick start to negotiations.

Khalilzad has not been to the Afghan capital since U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo failed to break the political deadlock between Ghani and Abdullah during a surprise visit in March amid the coronavirus pandemic, which kept most airports closed.

Frustrated by the political infighting, Pompeo cut $ 1 billion US in aid to the Afghan administration.

The United Nations and the U.S. have said the pandemic gives added urgency to the effort to end the fighting and quickly start talks. Afghanistan has reported 5,639 positive COVID-19 cases and 136 deaths but the figures are believed to be much higher.

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CBC | World News

Kate Middleton Recycles Fuchsia Maternity Coat on Public Outing With Prince William: Pics!

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An oldie but a goodie! Kate Middleton stepped out on Tuesday with her husband, Prince William, in a familiar ensemble. The pregnant Duchess of Cambridge went bold in a bright fuchsia maternity peacoat for her day of events in Coventry, England, just north of London. Getty Images Middleton previously donned the coat in March 2015, while pregnant with her daughter, Princess Charlotte. The look brightened up the grey English morning as she greeted the crowds outside of the…

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America Ferrera Talks Naming Her Child and Whether the Traveling Pants Work as Maternity Wear

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Don’t expect there to be an America Ferrera Jr.! The 33-year-old actress and activist visited The Late Show on Wednesday where she opened up to Stephen Colbert about her first pregnancy. When the comedian and host asked her if she planned to give her future child a unique name like her own, she replied, “I’m going to go with no. I love my name now, but growing up with the name America’s not easy, and I don’t want to put that on my child, because I know what that feels like. So I’m going to go…

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Serena Williams set for return to tennis after maternity leave

Serena Williams is set to make her return to competitive tennis at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship on Saturday.

The 36-year-old hadn’t played since defeating sister, Venus, in the Australian Open final last January. It was learned afterwards that Williams was eight weeks pregnant at the time of her Open-era record 23rd singles Grand Slam title.

Williams gave birth to daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr. in September.

The American will play 2017 French Open champion, Jelena Ostapenko, in the first women’s matchup in the history of the exhibition event. 

“I am delighted to be returning to the court in Abu Dhabi for the first time since the birth of my daughter in September,” Williams said in a statement.

“The Mubadala World Tennis Championship has long marked the beginning of the men’s global tennis season and I am excited and honoured to be making my comeback as part of the first women to participate in the event.”

Williams has yet to announce a decision on the Australian Open but tournament director, Craig Tiley, says it’s very likely that she’ll compete.

Currently ranked 22nd in the world, Williams won’t need a wildcard to gain entry.

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CBC | Sports News