What is Women’s Charter?
The Women’s Charter is a legislative act that was passed in 1961 to protect and advance the rights of women and girls in Singapore. It is a wide-ranking charter that brings together the regulation of the relationship between husband and wife and the relationship between parents and their children, termination of marriages and division of matrimonial assets. Furthermore, it provides protection against family violence and penalty for offences against women and girls.
The Women’s Charter applies to all men and women in Singapore, with the exception of persons married under Administration of Muslim Law Act who are excluded from parts of the Women’s Charter concerning divorce, division of matrimonial assets and maintenance.
SCWO and the Women’s Charter
In response to the public consultation on the amendments to the Women’s Charter, SCWO has submitted the following feedback:
2015 The Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) sought public feedback on amendments to the Women’s Charter (Amendment) Bill 2016 concerning, for example, spousal maintenance for incapacitated men and mandatory parenting programme. SCWO’s response to the proposed amendments can be found here.
2010 The following response was submitted, before the amendments to the Women’s Charter were passed in January 2011. Feedback on the Women’s Charter (Amendment) Bill (29 Oct 2010). The amended Charter introduced provisions to better prepare at-risk couples for marriage, to mitigate the impact of divorces, and to strengthen the enforcement of maintenance orders.
See also SCWO’s Feedback on Family Justice System, submitted in 2013.