According to 888.hu, the new government views the decrease of the country’s population as one of its biggest concerns and is planning on stopping it by forming a separate Department of Family Affairs.
Some leaked materials show that the first step would be to reduce mortality rates, since we are bringing up the rear in the European Union. According to Blikk.hu the proposed plan suggests health-screening programmes, improving hospitals and healthcare institutions and purchasing state of the art devices.
Fertility rates in Hungary were 1.25% in 2010, while in 2017 it was 1.49%. Since positive experiences may have a beneficial impact on childbearing, they are proposing to improve the circumstances of pregnancy and childbirth in the country.
This means the possibility of home birth or family friendly birth centres.
Expanding the capacities of nurseries from the current 50,000 to 90,000 is going to help employment rates. There will also be a greater number of part-time jobs or work from home possibilities available for Hungarian mothers. In Austria, 70% of mothers with children under 6 years old have part-time jobs, while this number in Hungary is as low as 10.2%. This could be rectified by modifying labour laws and providing a financial incentive for the employers.
Sociologist Gyula Szilágyi stated that by taking the proper measures it could be possible even to stop the decrease of the population, but it will take at least 2 to 3 years until this shows up in childbirth rates:
“If we have enough room in the nurseries and if the mothers can work part-time or from home, they will not feel that having children places them at a disadvantage, which means they will not be so afraid to give birth and there will be more children in Hungary.”
Translated by Dóra Szél
Featured image: MTI