Hotovely works to lower daycare costs

"Protesters have fallen in love with protesting," Likud MK says.

August 10, 2011 04:13
1 minute read.
IF WE annex it, they will come. Hotovely believes

Hotovely 311. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

MK Tzipi Hotovely has found herself in a unique position in recent weeks, as a Likud lawmaker who is actively working with protesters and calling on the government for reforms.

However, she is quick to point out that she only supports specific demands, saying those who organized demonstrations throughout the country are “confused.”

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Hotovely, chairwoman of the Knesset Committee on the Status of Women, has called for the government to institute free early childhood education.

She recently proposed a bill that would provide free education from the time a mother finishes her pregnancy leave until her child is five years old.

The central problem is that there are not enough daycare centers and nurseries, she said.

According to Hotovely, the amount of state-subsidized nursery schools does not meet the demand, and the only children who currently qualify to attend such schools are those with single mothers.

“We need a National Housing Committees Law for daycare centers, so there can be a wave of construction,” she said.

Another way Hotovely hopes the government will “make parents’ lives easier” is by subsidizing daycare for women who work part-time, and not only those with fulltime jobs.

She pointed out that one of the first bills she passed as an MK was to extend pregnancy leave to six months.

Hotovely has cooperated with leaders of the “stroller march” protesting the cost of raising children, inviting them to address her committee last week. She said, however, that much of the work must be done without them.

“These parents are confused, and they don’t know how to define their demands,” she said. “They need to focus on the most important issues, and not minor ones, such as the cost of diapers.”

“Daycare centers are the most expensive thing parents have to worry about,” she said.

As far as the protests across the country are concerned, Hotovely said they are about “rich people’s problems.”

“These are people with money, making decent salaries, but saying they can’t make it through the month,” she said. “They’ve fallen in love with protesting.”

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