Canada is a great place to raise a family

Marisca reflects on why the Great White North is a great country in which to have a baby

Happy Canada Day!

I’ve always been a proud Canadian but since having children, I’m so glad we live in such a great country. I wouldn’t pick anywhere else in the world to raise my girls. Before my first child was even born, I was grateful for our healthcare system.

The average cost to have a baby in an American hospital is more than $10,000, and that is without complications. I had prenatal visits throughout my first pregnancy, multiple ultrasounds, a caesarean section and I stayed in the hospital afterwards for three days. I left with a healthy baby and no bill.

I know we pay slightly more in taxes than our American friends do, but not having to worry about racking up a huge bill while going through labour and possibly making my medical decisions on whether I could afford them or not instead of what I knew was best for me and baby was something I won’t take for granted.

Even after labour and delivery, I didn’t have to worry so much about money.

READ LAST WEEK’S THE STICKY FILES: English is funny

In Canada, there are 15 weeks of maternity leave available followed by 35 weeks of parental leave. Our neighbours to the south get a lot less, in fact, they get nothing, unless their employer offers it.

The U.S. is one of the only developed countries without a national statutory paid maternity, paternity or parental leave. There is legislation that enables some employees to take up to 12 weeks unpaid maternity leave but only some workers are even eligible for this.

I couldn’t imagine going back to work right afterwards. My babies didn’t sleep through the night for a long time, months, maybe even years. It would be so hard to focus at work while on little sleep and ducking out from meetings to find a quiet spot to pump. I’m thankful I was able to stay at home for a full year. I know some Canadian moms need to go back earlier, or want to go back, but I needed that extra time and I was able to take it.

On top of our healthcare system, Canada is a great place to raise children. There are so many beautiful spots to explore — did you know Canada is home to more than 560 lakes larger than 100 square kilometres and 10 per cent of the world’s total forest cover?

We also enjoy good schools and freedom to be whoever you want to be.

Canada was recently ranked the second best country in the 2020 Best Countries Report, just behind Switzerland. The report is based on global perceptions and indicators of prosperity.

Another report ranked the best countries to raise a family and Canada made the top five.

But we don’t need fancy studies to know that the Great White North is the best place to be.


@MariscaDekkema
marisca.bakker@interior-news.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

ParentingSmithers

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Thursday’s blackout likely caused by vandalism

Power was out for 10,000 customers from Quick to the Hazeltons for almost 11 hours

VIDEO: Witset cannabis shop officially opens

The store, located at the gas bar on Hwy 16, is open seven days a week, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Police investigate July 2 homicide in Houston

Man succumbed to injuries at Pearson Road residence

Tahltan fighter from Telkwa wins provincial award

Lando Ball recognized for his commitment to and accomplishments in karate and for community service

Horrifying video shows near head-on collision on Trans Canada

The video was captured on dash cam along Highway 1

Fraser Valley woman complains of violent RCMP takedown during wellness check

Mounties respond that she was not co-operating during Mental Health Act apprehension

B.C. sees 12 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths

Three outbreaks exist in health-care settings

Lost dog swims Columbia River multiple times searching for home

The dog was missing from his Castlegar home for three days.

COVID-19: B.C. promotes video-activated services card

Mobile app allows easier video identity verification

ICBC to resume road tests in July with priority for rebookings, health-care workers

Tests have been on hold for four months due to COVID-19

Would you take a COVID-19 vaccine? Poll suggests most Canadians say yes

75 per cent of Canadians would agree to take a novel coronavirus vaccine

Budget officer pegs cost of basic income as calls for it grow due to COVID-19

Planned federal spending to date on pandemic-related aid now tops about $174 billion

Most Read