Sunday, February 25, 2007

Proposed $45000 baby bonus triggers abortion inquiries in Cyprus

A proposal by the Cypriot government to pay women a £24,000 "baby bonus" for a third child has resulted in a flood of inquiries about abortions from women considering delaying having a baby, MPs say.

Prospective mothers wanting to cash in on the windfall, aimed at reversing the island's declining birthrate, have deluged politicians, and the local media, following the offer of the premium for a third child.

"It's really bad. Pregnant women are calling in wondering whether they should have abortions now that they've heard about this very generous bonus," the conservative MP, Maria Kyriacou, told the Guardian. "Many are seriously considering termination. [It] is a lot of money, and if it means getting it they think they should wait."

The MP said she feared the problem would reach "epidemic proportions" if the government failed, when it debated the measure this week, to specify exactly when the bonus would apply.


[Note, the Washington Times says that the offer amounts to $45 000 US].

Holy Cow! $45 000 bucks. Sure, it's after the third child, but what an incentive. That's a down payment for a new house. Or it could pay for a new minivan.

Isn't it interesting though that people would have an abortion to benefit from the bonus. The Cypriot government might want to consider making it retroactive to a certain date, to discourage that. They want more births, not fewer.

I find it difficult to believe women would do this. Either you love your child or your don't. If you didn't want him in the first place, why are you having him?

I understand that abortion laws are somewhat restrictive in Cyprus. There are no abortions for "socio-economic" reasons, but we know that women get around that. I tried finding some abortion statistics for Cyprus to see how the situation shapes up, but to no avail.

I'd be interested to see how successful that plan is (and who's going to pay for it?)

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