What is the Women’s Charter?
The Women’s Charter is a legislative act that was passed in Singapore's Parliament in 1961. Its purpose is to protect and advance the rights of female Singaporeans, specifically to bring together greater legal regulation of the relationship between husband and wife in monogamous marriages (except in the areas of Muslim marriages which are governed by the Administration of Muslim Law Act separately), and also the relationship between parents and their children, divorce and separation between husband and wife, as well as the division of matrimonial assets and subsequent maintenance. It also serves to provide for the protection of the family, and metes out penalties for offences committed against female Singaporeans.
The Women's Charter was successfully campaigned for by Chan Choy Siong, wife of Singapore's former Cabinet Minister Ong Pang Boon. It has evolved with the changing social landscape of Singapore over the years, and the latest amendments to the Charter were passed in 2016.
The Women's Charter in full may be viewed here.