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Lottery of birth
Lottery of birth

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6.5 Thinking point: State support where you live

Described image
Figure 23 Some countries provide mother and baby bonding activities, such as swimming lessons.

You’ve heard about the support offered to mothers in Finland (and Scotland). Now it’s time to consider what happens where you live.

Activity 4

If you don’t already know what support is offered for new babies in your country, do some research and find out. Consider these questions:

  • What is provided for parents around the time of pregnancy and birth and the first year of a baby’s life where you live?
  • Is state support for parents when a child is born a recent development or has this become one of your country’s deeply rooted traditions like the Finnish example you just read about?
  • If it’s comparatively new, is this connected with concerns about population anxieties or some other kind of social change such as a change to women’s lives?
  • If it’s not new, why do you think your country responded to the needs of families in this way?

Make notes on your findings.

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In the next section, you will move on to consider what makes a good parent.