Matt Bruenig of the People’s Policy Project has authored a new paper offering a comprehensive set of pro-family policies, as progressives and Democrats increasingly turn to this important subject:
The seven benefits in the paper are:
- Baby box. Three months before the birth of a child, each family will receive a box that contains essential items like clothes and bottles with the box itself doubling as a bassinet.
- Parental Leave. Families will receive 36 weeks of paid leave for the birth of a child. In single-parent families, the sole parent is entitled to all 36 weeks. In two-parent families, each parent is entitled to 18 weeks but may transfer up to 14 weeks to the other parent. The paid leave benefit will be set equal to 100 percent of earnings up to the minimum wage and 66 percent of earnings beyond the minimum wage. All recipients will be entitled to benefits equal to at least the minimum wage but no more than the national average wage.
- Free child care. After the parental leave period, children will be entitled to a spot in a free public child care center. Parents who wish to care for their children at home can opt out and receive a home child care allowance equal to the per-child wages of child care workers. For example, if public child care workers are tasked with caring for four kids at a time, then the home child care allowance would be equal to one-fourth of the pay of child care workers.
- Free pre-k. From age 3 to 5, children will be entitled to spot in a free pre-k center.
- Free school lunch. Public child care centers, public pre-k centers, and public k-12 will all provide free school lunches.
- Free health care. Everyone below the age of 26 will be entitled to free health care through the Medicare system.
- Child allowance. Parents will receive $300 per month for every child they are caring for under the age of 18. This benefit will replace the child tax credit, child and dependent care tax credit, dependent care flexible savings accounts, 529 accounts as used for elementary or secondary school, and head of household filing status. It will also mostly replace the earned income tax credit.
You can read the full paper here.