The Liberals have done a complete reversal of thier
position on children's care. In 1999, the Liberal
government issued a report with a set of principles to
guide child and family policy that makes the
Conservative party $1,200 plan look pathetic.
"Final Report of the Sub-committee on Tax Equity
for Families of Dependent Children of the Finance Committee" 1999.
FROM THE REPORT:
SOME PRINCIPLES AND CONSIDERATIONS GUIDING THE
Recomendations for policy included:
In attempting to come up with a consensus amongst
members of the Committee as to the nature of the
current debate and possible solutions, we have been
guided by several broad principles that we believe
should apply to policies related to families with
These are, generally:
Our policy should be child centred and promote the
best interest of the child to the greatest extent
Our policy should presume that parents are the
primary caregivers and that they are in the best
position to determine what constitutes the best
possible care arrangement for their children.
Our policy should provide flexibility, options and
choices which will make it feasible for either parent
to be the caregiver or to be in the paid workforce.
Our policy should be inclusive and responsive to the
social realities, circumstances and preferences of
parents and their children. Specifically, it should
be sensitive to the situation of lone parents,
stay-at-home parents, those with disabled children,
the self-employed, students with children and those on
Our policy should be fair and equitable and neither
encourage nor penalize caregiving choices.
Now even the terms "equity" and "Families with
Dependent Children" are nowhere to be found . What
happened there, eh?
- Pensions for care-givers (ie mainly mums)
- Refundable tax credits
The basis for the 1999 government report was the
Liberal Party "Report of the Ad Hoc Study Group on
Valuing Caregivers to the National Liberal Caucus
Social Policy Committee," 1998.
It has almost the same principles.
- It starts with and continually emphasizes concerns
about the development and well being of children, and
details findings of serious concern with children now.
- It says infants need a "loving" caregiver.
- It states "the benefits of breastfeeding cannot be
overstated". Interesting that this was cut out.
- AND it states that the discussion started as a
result of the 1997 complaint to the UN by a "citizen"
(i.e. Bev Smith, Kids First member at the time and