Canada: Extra-long maternity leave + child allowance
There is no limit to the number of children in Canada, and the government encourages families to have more children because of the sparseness of the land.
Families with children receive a regular monthly “milk grant” or child allowance until the child turns 17. Children under the age of 6 receive a maximum of $569.41 per month, or $6,833 per year; children between the ages of 6 and 17 receive a maximum of $480.41 per month, or $5,765 per year. In other words, for one child, the Canadian government will pay the parents a total of over $100,000! For three children, that’s over $300,000!
In addition, the mother and child are fully covered by health insurance, from the maternity exam to the child’s illness. Not only does the mother have paid maternity leave, but the father also has the right to apply for leave from the company to take care of and spend time with his family for up to 69 weeks (with pay).
In addition, children receive subsidies for daycare, education allowances, interest-free loans for schooling, and mothers receive maternity benefits and up to a year and a half of maternity leave. Benefits that pregnant mothers can claim include pregnancy allowance, childcare allowance and sickness allowance.
There are also various hidden benefits in the provinces, for example, in Vancouver, families with children under the age of 18 can also defer payment of their home’s land tax in order to give families more money to support their children before they reach adulthood.
Japan: Numerous childcare subsidies + free education
In Japan, expectant mothers during the pregnancy stage can receive the “Childbirth and Childcare Allowance” from the Japanese government. The amount of the subsidy is 420,000 yen for each baby born. The amount of the allowance is adjusted according to the national policy.
In addition, all the expenses required for the birth of a child, such as maternity examinations and delivery costs, can be directly offset against personal income tax. The government waives social insurance for the entire maternity leave period.
During the period from the birth of the child until the child is one year old, parents who choose to stay at home to raise the child may receive a subsidy from the employment insurance, which is 50% of the original normal remuneration for labor. In addition, children receive an allowance called “child hand-me-downs” from birth to age 15. There is no restriction on nationality, as long as the parents are on a mid- to long-term visa and the child and caregiver are living in Japan at the same time.
In Japan, kindergarten will be free for children aged 3 to 5 years old from October 2019. At the public elementary and junior high school levels, tuition is always free, books are paid for by the state, and a rent-to-own system is in place.
When it comes to high school, public high school is free for families with an annual income of 9.1 million yen or less, and private high school is free for families with an annual income of 5.9 million yen or less. For an annual income of 5.9-9.1 million yen, the reduction is 118,800 yen/year. Starting from 2020, “Osaka Prefectural University” and “Osaka City University” will implement a new policy to waive tuition fees for students whose families earn less than 5.9 million yen per year.
Greece: Direct payment for childbirth
In Greece, maternity benefits are paid from the fifth month of pregnancy until the child is three years old, and are divided into single allowance child support and multiple child support depending on the number of children being raised.
The single allowance child support, which applies to dependent children in families with one or two children, is 40 euros per child per month.
The Multiple Child Family Allowance, which applies to families with three or more dependent children, provides a benefit of €500 per child per year. There are also benefits for hiring a family childcare nanny, benefits for hiring a home-based caregiver, family allowances until the child reaches adulthood, pre-school benefits for children, schooling benefits, adoption benefits, etc.
In 2020, these benefits will be increased. The Greek Deputy Minister of Labor, Domna Mekridou, announced that every parent of a newborn child in Greece will receive a subsidy of 2,000 euros. Of this amount, 1,500 euros will be paid immediately after the birth of the baby, and the remaining 500 euros will be paid within six months of the baby’s birth.
Australia: leave + cash allowance
Australia provides families with adequate long-term leave and cash benefits for the birth of a child. In addition, the hospital stay for the birth costs almost nothing and comes with three free meals a day.
Sweden: Encourage fathers to take leave + cash allowance
Sweden was the first country in the world to legislate for men to take maternity leave. After taking the statutory 60 days of maternity leave, parents receive a bonus of 3,000 kronor for each additional 30 days of maternity leave, and if fathers and mothers are “fully equal” in taking maternity leave If the father and mother are “fully equal” in terms of maternity leave, i.e. 240 days each, the parents can receive a maximum bonus of 135,000 kronor.
In addition, according to Swedish law, mothers-to-be can take prenatal leave starting 7 weeks before the expected date of birth, and parents can reduce their working hours by up to 1/4 until the child is 8 years old or has completed the first grade of elementary school.
Russia: Cash allowance + maternity leave
In 2006, Russia enacted the “Mother’s Fund”, which provides subsidies for families with two or more children. In 2013, Russia introduced a bill to ensure that women who have three children can take 4.5 years of maternity leave to care for their children at home.
France: Childcare allowance until the age of 18
In France, the birth of a child receives a monthly allowance of 177 euros until the child is 3 years old; the birth of a second child within 3 years receives a monthly allowance of 600 euros until the child is 6 years old; the birth of a third child receives a monthly allowance of 900 euros until the child is 18 years old. France also has the highest fertility rate in Europe, thanks to the advantages of its fertility policy.
Germany: Establishment of childcare centers and schools
The German government provides parents who stop working to take care of their children at home with a monthly allowance equal to 2/3 of their monthly income after taxes, up to 1,800 euros per month. If one parent continues to be absent from work for 2 months, he or she will be entitled to 14 months of benefits, or up to €25,200 in maternity benefit allowances. The government also proposes to create 230,000 childcare centers and extend school hours to help working mothers.
Denmark: Long-term maternity leave + cash allowance
Couples are entitled to up to 52 weeks of paid maternity leave combined, with maternity benefits topping out at DKK 3,940 per week before taxes in 2012 and DKK 4,005 in 2013. The government uses this benefit to subsidize the company’s expenses on the employee’s paid maternity leave salary while the mother is on paid leave from the company. If the company pays less than the government maternity allowance during maternity leave, then the government subsidizes the difference between the maternity
Spain: Cash allowance + a piggyback
In 2003, Spain introduced a childbirth incentive policy that rewards every child with a piglet.
In contrast to Western countries, it is hoped that our country can build on its strengths and avoid its weaknesses when formulating a three-child policy to provide maximum support to young parents. And in the face of the increasing pressure to raise their offspring, Chinese parents need to plan for their children’s status in a timely manner and work to provide better conditions and resources.