herald

Wednesday 13 December 2017

Jen one of many who face baby cost trap

Jennifer Maguire
Jennifer Maguire

cTV presenter Jennifer Maguire was in the news this week, revealing that she plans to take only 10 weeks off work after the birth of her first baby. This may sound like a short amount of time - that's becaues it is. As an independent contractor, Jennifer doesn't get maternity benefits. When her 10 weeks is up the presenter, like other self-employed new mums, will have to go back to work to pay the mortgage and the bills. Luckily for Jennifer, her partner can take care of their baby. But many mums in her position have to leave their infant in a crèche, unless family can step in to help. The cost of such care is huge and amounts to almost a second mortgage.

Being a new parent is expensive and tiring even at the best of times. It's time that self-employed parents got some financial assistance from the State. As the numbers of contractors and self-employed increase, such a move is badly needed. In the meantime, I wish the very best of luck to Jennifer and her husband on their forthcoming happy event!

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