So what is making news in the world of pregnancy and parenting this week?
What do you make of the election promises targeting parents? Will you benefit from Tony Abbott’s Paid Parental Leave scheme? Do you agree with Kevin Rudd’s new vaccination policy? Also, what are NSW fire officers warning parents of this winter? And how many mums are happy to feed in public where ever, when ever? The results may surprise you!
Keep reading to find out more …
Tony Abbott’s paid parental leave: what do you think?
Tony Abbott has announced that under a Coalition Government mums will receive six months’ leave at full pay – a move that will cost $5.5bn a year.
But the Labor party has called the policy ‘unfair’ – saying it will advantage the wealthy and questioning what other budget cuts will be made to pay for the expensive scheme.
Abbott says the scheme will be funded by a 1.5 per cent levy on the 3000 largest Australian companies. He said the levy would not be permanent but would not say when it would end. According to the Coalition’s policy document, the rest of the money will come from “associated reductions in other outlays”.
The scheme would begin on July 1, 2015 and women earning up to $150,000 a year would be eligible to receive their full wage for the six-month period.
The current Paid Parental Scheme provides women earning up to $150,000 with 18 weeks pay at the minimum wage (currently $622.10 a week).
Neither scheme requires the mother to return to work after the leave period to qualify.
Labor to cut Family Tax A Supplement for vaccination objectors
Kevin Rudd has announced changes to the Government’s vaccination policy that would mean parents who ‘conscientiously object’ to vaccinations would miss out on the Family Tax A supplement (currently worth $726 per child, each year).
Prime Minister Rudd says he hopes the move will see Australia’s vaccination rates move closer to 100 per cent.
Exemptions will still be permitted for religious and medical reasons.
Parents warned of wheat bag fire risk
Parents are being warned of the dangers of using heated wheat bags to warm a child’s bed this winter.
Fire and Rescue NSW and NSW Fair Trading are urging parents to not allow children to use wheat bags as bed warmers and to take care when heating using a microwave.
FRNSW commissioner Greg Mullins says firefighters have seen a number of incidents where wheat bags had begun to smoulder after being heated in the microwave and then placed under blankets.
“In a recent incident in Glen Innes, a woman heated two homemade wheat bags in the microwave, then placed them in her bed while she was in the shower,” he says.
“By the time she returned to the bedroom – in the time it took her to have shower – the bedroom was engulfed in flames and 80% of the house was lost in the fire. Had the wheat bag been placed in the bed of a sleeping child, the outcome could have been tragic.”
Wheat bag safety tips
– Don’t overheat the wheatbag by placing it in the microwave longer than specified by the manufacturer.
– Don’t leave the wheatbag unsupervised in the microwave.
– Don’t let anyone, particularly children or the elderly, sleep with a wheat bag.
– Don’t use the wheat bag to warm your bed up, as it may spontaneously ignite.
– Don’t reheat the wheatbag before it has properly cooled.
– A wheatbag should be cooled down on a non-combustible surface before storing.
Mums mostly happy to breastfeed in public
Aussie mums are mostly happy to breastfeed their babies in public
, according to the latest poll on the Bub Hub.
The poll showed that 64 per cent of mums were happy to “feed anywhere” a further 15 per cent breastfed their baby in public but only in designated areas.
Only 9 per cent of women who answered the poll said they were “too embarrassed” to breastfeed in public.
Bub Hub website editor Rebecca Galton says the results show that despite occasional media reports to the contrary most women feel comfortable and unintimidated when breastfeeding in public.