Mothers need public childcare – and also fathers’ help to go back to work


If there are more places in daycare centres, mothers with young children go back to work sooner, but there are further barriers to returning to work. These were the main issues that Judit Krekó and Ágota Scharle discussed in their interview for Qubit (in Hungarian).

There are few job oppotunities with flexible working hours or telework, especially for fathers. Also, "fathers are still less involved in caring for their young children, and there are no personalised active labour market measures to facilitate the reconciliation of work and family life." The long maternity leave (it is almost unique in Europe that mothers can stay at home with a child for up to three years) and the social expectation that the mother should be at home with the child also act as a deterrent. These conclusions come from two of our recent studies. One looked at the impact of the availability of childcare, the other at the wider policy context, also comparing it with the Polish practice.