“I am a woman, and I am not happy with my own situation,” said Cathrine, a mother of two from the Republic of Ireland.
“I feel like my life is not worth living anymore.
I feel like I have to give up on my own child.”
“I felt I was not welcome in my own country,” she added.
“My child was born in Ireland and I was a part of the family.
I felt that I was being treated as an equal and the state was not interested in my child’s upbringing.”
“There are still things that have not been achieved,” said the mother, who has worked for several years as a childcare provider.
“There is a lot of discrimination against women, and in my case, it is still not recognised.”
The Irish Government is considering making changes to the laws regarding the right to parent and the right for children to live with their parents.
“We have to take steps to make sure that people are not discriminated against, that there is equality of treatment,” said Minister for Children Frances Fitzgerald.
“This is something that needs to be addressed.”
A number of other families are also seeking to improve their child care arrangements.
“For me, my son is so young and so special, but I am a single parent with two young kids, I can’t afford to put him through a new nursery.
I want to support my son, I want him to get the best possible education,” said Anne, from the UK.
“But I am struggling to afford the cost of childcare.
I am getting sick of having to work at the weekend.”
She said the Government was also looking into changes to childcare laws, which are set to go into effect on July 1.
“When the law came into force I had no idea how it would change,” she said.
“As a single mum I am very happy with the childcare that I have, and that is my focus.
But it will take time before I feel safe enough to start having my child.”
Ms Fitzgerald said it was important for childcare providers to have the right information on childcare arrangements so that they could be able to make informed decisions.
“That information is always going to be needed and I have worked with providers to ensure that they are fully informed about the legislation and what it means for their families,” she explained.
“It is an ongoing process, but there is a good understanding between us.”
She added that the Government is aware of some of the challenges faced by Irish parents.
A recent survey found that Irish families are less likely to have children of their choice because of childcare problems.
“Irish women are far less likely than other women to have a partner of choice, so this is a real issue for women in particular,” she continued.
Source: Al Jazeera”
Our aim is to see that childcare is available for all children equally and we are committed to that.”
Source: Al Jazeera