At least 270,000 applications have been submitted for a new family support scheme rolled out by the Polish government in an effort to increase the country’s birthrate.
Since January 1st at least 270,000 applications have been made for the Family Care Capital programme, which allows parents to receive an untaxed sum of 1,000 Polish złoty (£183/$249) per month per child for a year or 500 złoty (£92/$125 per month over a period of 2 years.The children eligible must be at least the parents’ second child or any subsequent child and be 12-36 months old.
Family Minister Marlena Maląg stated last week that the new policy would aim to tackle Poland’s ageing population and its demographic changes, saying: “Poland, but in principle, all developed countries, face challenges related to demographic changes. We try to meet them. We help families, and this means that we invest in the future of the next generations.”
In 2016, Poland’s conservative government led by the Law and Justice Party (PiS) began the Family 500 Plus programme to boot birth rates in the country, with the programme will be handled by the Social Insurance Institution rather than local governments.
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The programme already grants 500 Polish złoty to parents until their children reached the age of 18, with parents with disabled children receiving 800 złoty per month.
According to a European Union report from May of 2018, the programme had already shown some results, with a 13-15 per cent childbirth increase in December of 2016 and January of 2017 — although birthrates in many countries have since been damaged by the Wuhan virus pandemic.
Eurostat, the European Union statistics agency, reported that in 2019 Poland’s birthrate was just 1.44 children per woman, one of the lowest in the EU.
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Poland is not the only country to pursue pro-family policies rather than mass migration as a method to combat demographic decline and an ageing population.
Hungary has implemented many pro-family policies, offering grants and loans to parents who have several children and lifetime income tax exemption to women who have four or more children, among other measures.
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