UK Stay-At-Home Moms Will Receive PensionsMay 14, 2012 No Comments
Great news for mothers came just in time for Mothers Day this weekend. Mothers and caretakers in the UK who choose to stay home and raise kids will receive a full pension. Those who retire after 2015 will be treated as if they have worked their whole lives. This is a huge step for women and the value of motherhood.
Those who stay home to raise kids are doing the most important job in the world, raising future generations. But as Sociologist Ann Crittenden points out, they are often treated and paid as if they were not doing anything. Stay-at-home caretakers, who are most often women, are at risk of becoming financially dependent on their husbands or of having nothing to support them in their old age. This is a very important step in recognizing how hard the unpaid labour of mothers is.
Meanwhile, the US still has no national policy for paid maternal leave or anywhere near such a substantial pension plan. We pretend to champion women’s rights but do not support mothers or even recognize their labour. Couples can take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave if they have a child if they meet certain qualifications. But in this economy, very few families can afford to give up one person’s salary for 12 weeks.
It’s time for the US to follow the examples of the UK, Canada, and other countries and recognize the cost motherhood has on women. The poorest people in our country are women and children. This is a reason why.
Contact the author here: jennY@morninguickie.com