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Bill seeks to grant employees heartbreak leave

by Carl Santos

DO YOU need more time to get over a heartbreak? 

For Representative Lordan Suan of Cagayan de Oro City, workers in the public and private sectors have to be granted a few days off in order to grieve and start the process of moving on.

“Studies reveal the substantial toll breakups take on individuals, affecting their emotional and mental well-being, leading to decreased productivity, absenteeism, and higher healthcare costs. Recognizing this reality, the bill acknowledges the legitimacy of emotional distress stemming from personal life and offers crucial support during this challenging time,” Suan said in filing House Bill 9931.

“By allowing time and space for emotional processing, [the heartbreak leave] can lead to improved focus and performance upon return,” he added.

The bill proposes the following:

  • one unpaid heartbreak leave in a year for employees aged below 25
  • two unpaid heartbreak leaves in a year for employees aged 25 to 35
  • three unpaid heartbreak leaves in a year for employees aged 36 and above
  • Before using the heartbreak leave, employees must submit a signed statement confirming the end of the romantic relationship within the last 30 days. 

The bill also mandates the Department of Labor and Employment and the Civil Service Commission, in collaboration with mental health professionals, to develop and distribute evidence-based resources on navigating heartbreak and emotional well-being to government offices, employers, and employees.

For a bill to become law, it must be approved by both chambers of Congress and the president.



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