AIBU to think that saying the new childcare proposal discriminates against SAHP is like saying JSA discriminates against the employed?

(732 Posts)

So I know it's fairly old news, but the new government proposals to help working parents with childcare costs have been popping up on my BBC newsfeed this week.

Now there are plenty of things wrong with these new proposals, such as the "help" only being available for parents with under-5s to start with, and that students don't count as "employed" so if you're both/one of you are students and need childcare while you're at college you get no help at all. At least they're apparently going to count being a carer as "employed" so families where one parent stays home to care, they will get help with childcare.

However, what I don't understand is why these aren't the issues being highlighted, but instead, just people whining that SAHPs will lose out. Erm, please correct me if I'm missing some fundamental point here, but isn't that because SAHPs, by their very nature, don't need childcare!! That's why they stay at home - to look after their own children.

I've seem quotes that this is a "carrot dangled at SAHMs to tempt them back into work". Um, no, who the heck would put themselves into a situation they don't want for the sake of claiming a benefit they don't really need?

So to my mind, it's like complaining that you aren't entitled to JSA because you have a job, and saying that having JSA for those who need it is "dangling a carrot in front of people with jobs to tempt them into unemployment".

AIBU?

mrslyman Tue 06-Aug-13 16:08:25

Annie btw not everyone can claim now. You can't if you are self-employed and even if you are employed your employer may chose not to participate in which case you can't claim vouchers.

impecuniousmarmoset Tue 06-Aug-13 16:10:32

In an ideal world, you're right. But 'SAHP' is such a broad category. As you say, student parents are buggered by these proposals. The other people who are buggered are SAHPs who want to go back to work, because without any help with childcare, um, it's quite difficult to find work! Or people like me who are self-employed and just getting back in the swing of things, but still earning very little indeed (for which read next to nothing). Without help with childcare, it's not clear to me that I can fully get back into the world of work at all, because how can I start earning if I'm looking after 2 small children?

Fundamentally, these are proposals that assume a black and white world whereas the real world is full of shades of grey. Now there's a surprise from this sorry excuse for a government hmm

HurricaneWyn Tue 06-Aug-13 16:11:17

Also as there is also a scheme in place that helps with childcare costs I just don't buy into the argument that this is a policy aimed at opening up a divide between SAHM and WAHM/ WOHM.

I think, and I could be wrong as I'm not in this situation, that it's because of the changes to Child Benefit. If you earn £60k you have enough money & don't need Child Benefit, even if you have to support a partner & children on that one wage.

But, if you earn up to £300k between you, you need £100 a month help towards childcare.

I think this is why it's seen as causing a divide.

impecuniousmarmoset Tue 06-Aug-13 16:11:52

And while it's true that not everybody can claim childcare vouchers now, if they design a scheme that is specifically intended to help parents in work, but in practice excludes a large number of them, then it's fair to take issue with that. And how long before free hours for three-year-olds go the way of all the other help with childcare?

mrslyman - indeed, and this is at least one good thing about the new scheme - the self-employed and people whose employers aren't part of the vouchers scheme will finally be able to get help.

TheOldestCat Tue 06-Aug-13 16:12:56

"If you chose to bring up your own children..."?

Godwin's Law of the SAHP/WOHP discussion.

Mine are being brought up by wolves.

YANBU at all.

ButThereAgain Tue 06-Aug-13 16:14:27

ophelia, presumably because our low-wage economy makes it very hard for the people who need to work to be able to do so without financial help. In effect, the govt is giving a subsidy to employers to keep wages artificially low. They do that because of their perception of what benefits the economy, not to validate one lifestyle over another. Even in the heyday of pre-austerity politics it would be pretty absurd to think of the function of benefits or tax breaks being the validation of a lifestyle, which is what SAHP seem to be angling for (perhaps because of Tories' pre-election noise about using the tax system to validate, or indicate approval for, marriage).

bigkidsdidit Tue 06-Aug-13 16:15:46

It is utterly daft. The childless don't get child benefit either but that seems equivalent to me to the moaning published in the papers this weekend.

caramelwaffle Tue 06-Aug-13 16:16:17

Yanbu.

mrslyman Tue 06-Aug-13 16:16:36

impecuniousmarmoset but if a SAHP wants to go back to work then when they do they can start claiming the vouchers so I'm not sure what you're point is.

mrslyman Tue 06-Aug-13 16:16:42

your even.

CheeseOnTop Tue 06-Aug-13 16:17:39

Everything in the tax and benefits system discriminates against SAHP.

Especially those married to higher rate tax payers, who would get taxed way less and get child benefit if they both worked for less.

Starballs - would you prefer that both you and DP worked for £30k a year rather than just one of you working for £60k a year?? You'll save a bit in tax and get child benefit - and it will only cost about £1000 a month in childcare? hmm

thought not!!

MadeOfStarDust Tue 06-Aug-13 16:18:37

I thought the main argument should be why should people without kids be paying for childcare for people with kids, earning a joint salary of up to 300K, to go out to work.

I'm a SAHM and do get a bit peed off that having got married and had kids I am only valued if I work... So I am valued if I am paid to look after other peoples children , but not if I look after my own. Maybe these "tax breaks" to be announced for married couples in November will make me feel less "invisible" - maybe not....

HurricaneWyn Tue 06-Aug-13 16:18:48

Mine are being brought up by wolves

Mine are brought up by the cat - a bit like nana in Peter Pan. Seems to be working grin

x2boys Tue 06-Aug-13 16:19:00

well I,m sorry than I heard something on the news yesterday and it said that it was the same thing and the government were just spin doctoring was probably not listening properly my apologies

mrslyman Tue 06-Aug-13 16:19:23

As an aside, I'd have thought that SAHP would be more in line with a conservative ideology and WOHP/ WAHP would the labour/ socialist option.

Although, I suspect as usual what it will come down to is a who will vote for us ideology.

calopene Tue 06-Aug-13 16:22:15

YANBU- why would someone who doesn't work need childcare ?

mrslyman Tue 06-Aug-13 16:24:42

I thought the main argument should be why should people without kids be paying for childcare for people with kids, earning a joint salary of up to 300K, to go out to work.

You can use this argument for all things tax related though. Why should my taxes be used to pay for healthcare for people who are ill when I'm very healthy? Why should I pay towards your child's education when my children aren't of school age?

x2boys Tue 06-Aug-13 16:26:45

hurricane wyn I,m presuming your a student nurse? as you mention wards how on earth can you afford childcare with the pittance those vouchers give you I only ask as I,m a nurse too and would never be able to afford the ridiculous prices of unsociable hours [child care] mind you my dh works very unsocial hours too so we try to work opposite each other does your dh /partner have a 9-5 job?

LieweHeksie Tue 06-Aug-13 16:27:08

YAB Very Reasonable.

LittleBearPad Tue 06-Aug-13 16:30:36

Why should a SAHP's decision to stay be validated by the tax system into which they as individuals contribute nothing.

Society in many ways validates women who stay at home with their children - read the Daily Mail if you want examples. But the tax system doesn't and shouldn't.

YoniRanger Tue 06-Aug-13 16:39:58

Erm excuse the crap spelling!

ButThereAgain Tue 06-Aug-13 16:44:50

It sounds like the perspective of privilege to even think of saying that the tax and benefits system should take into account the need to "feel valued," at a time when the welfare state is failing to meet real and desperate basic needs of the poorest. Like a bad parody of middle-class entitlement.

Quite a lot of online noise seems to distort good feminist points about the invisibility and undervaluing of what is still largely treated as women's work into a claim for recognition via welfare. There are other and better ways of seeking recognition.

HurricaneWyn Tue 06-Aug-13 16:50:06

x2boys - I'm very lucky in that our nursery allows me to notify them in advance of what days I need the DC to attend & the 12 hour shifts generally only means 3 days a week for the 6 weeks I'm on placement. Again, I'm lucky in that a lovely childminder picks up the DC from the nursery & takes them to hers until DH picks up at 7.30 (she can't take them straight from school due to ratios or we'd do that).

Because it's only 3 days a week for 6 weeks at a time, DH gets £150 a month in vouchers and this averages out to cover what we need. We do come unstuck if I'm on placement during half term if DH has no leave left (especially when I was on my community placement & had 5 short days instead of 3 long days). When I'm on nights, I drop the DC with DH at the train station at 7 & then race to start at about 10 past 7. Ward managers are generally ok with this as I can still have a handover & it means we don't have to use any childcare at all.

But, I'm very lucky with such flexible childcare - very few people are in my position.

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