Are you rich enough to raise a child?

Thousands of Hungarian parents have been separated from their children due to financial reasons. Sometimes not having a stroller can be enough for parents to be placed at risk of losing a child.

Ivett Körösi
Ivett Körösi Nepszava, Hungary
Source: Nepszava
Are you rich enough to raise a child?

 - NewsMavens
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Why this story matters:

How much does should a family have in their bank account to have a baby? Does having a child require a financial minimum? A baby cannot eat love so it certainly does. How much is enough, however, is a difficult question.

In Hungary, many families are risking losing their children due to financial reasons. As a child protection expert claimed in the article recommended below, sometimes not having a stroller or a changing table can prompt social services to step in. Even though the law says that a child should not be separated from his family due to financial reasons.

The separation not only represents an emotional strain but it’s often not a real solution to the problem since the children end up in an overstretched system which lacks proper resources.

“You cannot blame the parents for not being able to buy a pair of shoes for a child. Instead of threatening them... [social services] should provide the family with a pair of shoes,” says expert Szilvia Gyurkó.

Details from the story:

  • In the last two years the number of children who were placed under the protection of social services increased by 5,000. In most cases, the reason was that the parents were “too poor”.
  • Placing a child under the protection of social services does not automatically mean that the child is separated from the parents but it may ultimately lead to it.
  • Szilvia Gyurkó, a child protection expert criticised the state of the social services: as she explained, there are offices in Pest county where 10 people have to inspect 800 families.
  • The children thus often end up in a system which lacks resources.
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