They call it the burnt toast syndrome.
Mum makes breakfast for the family, but one of the pieces is overcooked. She could jump in straight away and grab the good pieces, but she doesn’t. She waits. She offers the plate of toast to the rest of the family and then takes the last piece for herself; the burnt one. Mum puts herself last. She always does. She prioritises family and makes sacrifices so that no one else has to feel inconvenienced or disappointed.
But it doesn’t just stop at toast.
Mum puts her career second to that of her partners and she puts her children’s health and wellbeing above her own. And now we can see from the government’s latest plot to destroy and demonise those dastardly double dipping mums that this culture of putting mums last is ingrained not just in mothers themselves, but also in our public policies.
Putting aside for the moment the fact that a good paid parental leave scheme actually exists not only to benefit mums, but also families, workplaces and the economy – it is mothers who are worst and most directly hit by these proposed changes. Approximately 99% of recipients of paid parental leave are mothers despite the fact that the payments can be transferred to qualifying fathers.
If passed, the changes to paid parental leave will mean an estimated 80,000 women (mums) will lose some or all of the paid leave entitlements.