Advancing women’s rights in Bahrain through legislative reforms

13 June 2024 1 min read

By Balall Maqbool and Saba Adel Mustafa

At a glance

  • Bahrain’s legislative framework has significantly advanced women’s rights, with national legislation reflecting leadership’s commitment to gender balance and women’s empowerment.
  • Amendments to Bahrain Law No. 36/2012 have increased women’s rights in the private sector, ensuring equal entitlements for women and men.
  • The law provides comprehensive support for working mothers, including paid maternity leave, daily childcare hours, and protection against dismissal due to marriage or maternity leave.

The Bahrain Head of the Services Committee of the consultative council has announced that it has significantly advanced women's rights through a strong legislative framework. National legislation supporting gender balance and women’s empowerment reflects the leadership’s interest, with support from the President of the Supreme Council for Women. The Bahraini Constitution and the National Charter affirm equality among all citizens, prohibiting discrimination in rights and duties.

Amendments to Bahrain Law No. 36/2012 in the private sector have reinforced women's rights in the workplace, granting them the same entitlements as their male counterparts. The legislation also addresses the needs of working mothers and provides:

  • 60 days of paid maternity leave;
  • two hours of childcare per day until the child reaches six months; and 
  • two 30 minute care periods until the child’s first birthday. 

Additionally, the law prohibits the dismissal or termination of a female worker due to marriage or maternity leave.