The year started with the changes to child benefit kicking in. Ministry of Mum writes as someone who will lose their benefit, and questions the fairness of the decision. While The 1970s Diet look at proposals for benefits cuts of a different kind.
Childcare was also up for discussion after the government proposals for changes to child adult ratios. Musings From A Mum doubts there can be any positive outcome from this, in terms of either care levels or cost. Meanwhile Chelsea Mamma looked at the cost of childcare from the perspective of a provider, and Bike Lights in the Fruit Bowl writes from her own experience as a user of childcare. Crafts on Sea takes a personal look at lots of factors relating to childcare and how it affects her employment choices.
The government also announced proposed changes to parental leave and flexible working options. Dad Blog UK hosted a twitter chat with the employment relations minister Jo Swinson, you can read a transcript here, and he will be following it up with a further post shortly. What do you think about ministers taking part in twitter Q&A’s? I like it, while it is true it may only be lip service, it does give us all an opportunity to put our questions and thoughts forward direct, and I hope more of them will be willing to get involved in this kind of activity going forward.
Also in the news, Slummy Single Mummy looks at the cost of buying your own home, her post includes some astounding stats about the property price rises over the past 40 years. The strivers vs skivers debate got a couple of us riled up. I wrote about my dislike of a labelling system that seems to be designed merely to divide and conquer. A very similar train of thought got Live Otherwise scribbling furiously too, and she quite rightly looks at who the actual scroungers are, as well as touching on bedroom tax.
Of course the story on lots of people’s lips this month has been horses for main courses, not strictly political, but it certainly evokes strong feelings in many, and several bloggers tackled the topic. Babberblogs post made my laugh, but also looks at the serious issue of the cost of good food. Daddacool managed to fit in the BEST SONG EVER ABOUT A HORSE and looks at the legal stand point from a trading standards perspective, and where the scandal could go next.
The fab and creative Story of Mum are focussing on Mama Activism this month and have a series of posts from guest bloggers, including some fellow BritMums here. I love this one from Lulastic on her experiences as an Activist Parent.
Staying with Mum power, this month also saw an AMAZING trip taken by Team Honk, where three of our favourite intrepid bloggers accompanied Comic Relief to Ghana to look at some of the work achieved by the charity over the last 25 years. Visit Team Honks website to read all about their experience, and to find out about their fund raising plans. Another great movement focussed on by several was the launch of the IF campaign. IF is an amazing new initiative by over 100 charities who have launched the Enough Food for Everyone IF campaign, ably explained by Dorky Mum, who links up with others who have posted on the topic. I LOVE that the blogging community can turn its power to good, raising money and awareness of incredible and important things and that leads me to my last story this month…
Tamsyn from Anecdotes of a Manic Mum received an email piling even more pressure on her already stressful life, coping with a family while fighting for her husband Alex’s rights following a brain injury. This is the benefits cuts in action, so quickly written off by elements of the press as scroungers, the reality is that many who rely on benefits have real life stories that would make you weep, and the choices they face because of these cuts are heart breaking. But staying with Tamsyn, some light was provided by the amazing looking ball held to raise money for the Making Waves for Alex campaign. Super Amazing Mum has a fab write up of the night, and you will spot some familiar faces in the accompanying photographs!
That’s me done, apologies if I missed you out – has been a busy month! As usual there is a linky to add your posts too below, and don’t forget to send me your posts for the next round-up in four weeks time.