Imagine falling pregnant and not having to worry about how you will live on one income, and how soon you would need to go back to work in the baby’s first year, writes Karen Miles of Motherhood – Career and Identity.
Imagine not having to put your unborn child’s name on a day care waiting list in hope they will be accepted in a years’ time? And how about not worrying about how you will cover child care costs if your child is accepted?
Imagine not being treated as an uncommitted worker if you needed to take a day off work to look after your sick child? Or worry about the cost of visits to the doctor, or hospital?
If you are fortunate enough to be Swedish, you don’t have to imagine any of these scenarios; this is how it is. Sweden is a world leader in paid parental leave, enabling parents to be at home with their children for 16 months, two of which are mandatory ‘daddy months’.
Sweden is world-renowned for its generous tax-financed social welfare system. It is a world leader in gender equality in parenting through its maternity and paternity paid leave provisions. But how do they do it? And is achieving a work-life balance really possible? You can find out more at: www.essentialbaby.com.au.