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Japan pushes all new dads in government to take 1 month off

Tokyo wants to set example for businesses and municipalities

A man picks up his child from day care. Few fathers in Japan take parental leave. (Photo by Kotaro Igarashi)

TOKYO -- Japan will urge new fathers at government offices to take at least a month of parental leave starting next fiscal year, hoping to spread the trend to the private sector and help stem the country's population decline.

A record 21.6% of eligible male civil servants in general positions at the national government took parental leave in fiscal 2018, up 3.5 percentage points from the year before.

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