Post # 1
Here in Canada they extended parental leave to 18 months paid, but only 33% of you’re pay. You are still given the option to take 12 months at 55% of you’re pay. I have a friend who’s expecting her baby in a few weeks, and I shared the post on FB regarding the pay cut and how people aren’t seeing it for what it really is. Yes, you can stay home for 18 months, but can you afford to do so?
We speak regularly & she’s a single parent her boyfriend walked out on her and she makes 10k a year. She was saying how baby bonus is enough where she can stay home and was under the impression the same went for me. I explained to her that it didn’t work that way for ALL familes.
My husband makes 120k a year, I make 30k. So basically her baby bonus on a single parent income of 10k is going to be much higher than ours. I was explaining how it doesn’t make sense to tak 18 months at 33% pay unless you can afford it. She basically told me that I shouldn’t get a baby bonus when I have kids because people who make what we do as a family are “abusing” the system.
“Baby bonus if for people like me, even if I said I was common law it wouldn’t change because he’s unemployed. So it depends on the situation. But these benefits are supposed to help for those who can’t afford it. Not for people making money. If you make 150k a year house hold income and still get baby bonus you’re abusing the system.”
Honestly……I don’t even know what to say, I’m so annoyed with this comment. I just ignored her. So here we are getting out of debt and down sizing our place to save money and she thinks if I don’t get a baby bonus it’s ok because the benefits are for people like her who don’t work and want a child?
This is just a vent bees….I don’t know what to say to her.
Post # 2
I don’t live in Canada, but I think I understand what you have said about parents having the option either to take 12 months’ leave at 55 percent of their normal salary or 18 months’ leave at 33 percent of their normal salary.
What I do not understand at all is your statement suggesting that your friend receiving only 33 percent of 10K for 18 months could possibly be greater than your receiving 33 percent of $30K for the same period. Can you please clarify the point you’re trying to make?
Post # 3
Brielle : Shes talking about baby bonus. The 55% and 33% is covered from EI for paternity leave. Baby bonus is a seperate cheque you get every month from the government until your child/ren is 18. Households making less money will get more for the baby bonus and more well off people will get less. Thats how I understand it anyway.
I dont think you are abusing the system at all. Its a system put in place for every canadian and more well off people dont even get that much. you wanna talk about abusing the system..look at our welfare system.
Post # 4
1. As someone who just watched all of their legislators debate that some of them think it’s a good idea to force women to return to work within 60 days if they want to have healthcare, provide zero paid benefits to women on maternity leave, only 12 weeks guaranteed holding their job if they qualify for that protection, and cutting pre- and post-natal care, I’m finding it a little hard to be sympathetic to your plight right now.
2. You clearly have a system in place much different than ours. And that’s ok. As long as you are operating within the confines of that system, then great. That’s a great option you have available to you and you aren’t abusing it. Be confident in that knowledge. There seem to be two things going on here:
a. Your friend clearly is having a hard time. She’s a single mom making peanuts with a deadbeat ex-boyfriend who walked out on her. Probably a good thing in the long run but pretty hard to stomach when you’re living in the middle of it. I could see how someone in a much more unfortunate position can take your discussions about topics like these and your personal living situation as self-righteous bragging, even if that isn’t your intent. You seem to be in a very fortunate position to have a few choices available to you that she may not. Perhaps there is a tinge of jealousy in there as well on her part and being more sensitive to the obvious financial disparity in your life may be something you want to be more mindful of (because you are not really talking about 30K vs. 10K, you’re talking about 150K vs. 10K here).
b. Maybe you just legitmately have different political idealogies. Maybe she just believes that certain benefits should be at a certain income level and feels like people above that level shouldn’t get support. And that’s ok. She’s allowed to have different ideologies than you. Maybe she didn’t express it in the best way accusing you of abusing the system since the system currently allows it – maybe she just thinks the system ought to be changed. As someone who lives in a country that seems to have warring factions of what people think the “system ought to be doing” I can tell you that you just need to learn to co-exist. Maybe political/government related topics are something you don’t discuss with this friend anymore. If it comes up again, just say “We’ll just have to agree to disagree then. I’m just using the system we have in place and I’m grateful for that opportunity. I’m glad the system is something you can use as well. Want to split a slice of cheesecake with me or should we order our own desserts?”
Post # 5
Brielle : No, that’s not what I meant, granted I’d get more.
I meant she said people who have a higher income should not get any child benefits because she sees it as “abusing” the system.
I’m just frustrated she feels because I make 20k more than she does that I’m not allowed to have a baby bonus.
Post # 6
railroaderwifeyxo : as someone in the us who looks as Canada and just thinks “damn y’all have got it so good” – you sound a bit entitled. You and your husband are fairly well off, and you’re complaining your check from the government for choosing to procreate isn’t bigger. Sorry not sorry.
Post # 7
catskillsinjune : Where do you get the impression that she’s complaining her cheque isn’t bigger?
Post # 8
railroaderwifeyxo : Yeah, I mean, I tend to agree that a couple making 150k probably doesn’t need a bonus check from the government for having a kid, but that doesn’t mean you’re abusing the system. If the system is set up for what you’re doing, how can it be abuse? I’m certainly not going to turn down free money, even if I don’t agree with the government policy.
I’m thinking that said friend is jealous of your relatively comfortable situation when she is obviously struggling.
Post # 9
I’m Canadian, and currently on mat leave. My baby bonus is very low, because of our income bracket. It’s not abusing the system as you are entitled to it….but realistically, a 150k/year household needs it a lot less than a 10k/year household.
Post # 10
railroaderwifeyxo : If you’re allowed to take the bonus, then that’s not abuse. So if that’s the case — she thinks you SHOULDN’T be allowed, but you ARE, then taking the bonus wouldn’t be abuse and she’s wrong. But it’s weird that you keep saying you only make $20k more than her. Maybe your portion of your family income is only $20k more than her, but your family income is $140k more than hers. Those are the numbers you need to compare if you want to be truthful and accurate. Could that be part of what she’s complaining about? That you seem to be saying “yeah, we’re in the same boat” when you’re actually not even in the same ocean?
Post # 11
railroaderwifeyxo : “I was explaining how it doesn’t make sense to tak 18 months at 33% pay unless you can afford it.“
Honestly, I think she may have interpreted that as you saying people like her shouldn’t take 18 months because she can’t afford to. That’s how I read this, and I would be pissed if I thought someone (esp a friend of mine) was trying to point out what I can’t afford.
Taking benefits you are entitled to by law isn’t abusing the system — but your friend might have just said that in anger about how you were coming off.
Post # 12
annabananabee : yes, totally agree. I was not impressed at all with all male panel deciding to get rid of the obamacare protections re maternity care.
Going back to maternity care not being offered on most insurances and being treated as a preexisting condition is a horrible economic burden. I don’t think most people realize how things were before Obamacare.
OP, I think you need to practice empathy for your friend. As PP pointed out she’s all alone, making 10k and a single parent. Yeah, she’s going to think you have it easy, and to be fair, you do have a better economic situation and resource situation by far. Was this “her choice” and therefore she doesn’t get to be jealous? That’s a matter of personal ideology. But if you love her, you need to see her POV.
Post # 13
railroaderwifeyxo : “you” might make 20k more than her, but your household – which is really what matters – makes 140k more than her. I can see how she would feel you don’t “need” the baby bonus. But abusing the system is lying about what you make or twisting things in some other way so that you get more than what the government says you should get. So as long as you and your husband report your 150k income, I don’t see how it could possibly be called abusing the system.
As another American, be thankful for your situation.
Post # 14
Ok so for American bees, the closest correlation i can see is this: people with higher incomes shouldn’t be able to use dependent deductions for taxes, because that’s taking resources from low income families who need the dependent tax deductions. Never mind the fact that dependent deductions are a much higher percentage for low income families.
OP: i think your friend is dealing with a lot right now and that’s causing her to lash out.
However, I’d definitely be pissed if I read that. As long as you’re not lying to get the benefits, then you’re not abusing the system.
Post # 15
Also, American bees…she never said she’s not thankful for her situation. Just because our healthcare sucks does not mean that she’s not allowed to be frusterated about a difference of opinion over her country’s policies. That sounds a lot like “who cares if you get maternity leave, at least no-one throws acid in your face.”