Call to back parents as 'lifetime team'

 The Association of Catholic Women has called on the government to give married parents favourable treatment as 'lifetime teams' committed to raising their children together. In response to the Green Paper asking for ways to help parents, the Association has rejected the idea of paternity leave and instead is calling for long term support for families. The Association is proposing a 'Two Parent Scheme' which treats a mother and a father as a lifetime team for taxation purposes and gives them favourable status. Echoing comments made recently by Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, the Association is asking the government to defend marriage, and wants them to base all family policies on the foundation of a lifelong bond between a man and a woman. "We believe that the emphasis should be based on the welfare of the children and that this is best served by supporting the family, within marriage, to rear and care for their children in their own homes" says the letter, signed by Mrs Dorothy Anteney, who represents the Association on the Women's National Commission. The Association is also asking that families caring for their children at home should receive equal financial treatment with those opting for out-of-home nursery care. It is calling for a Homemakers Allowance for a parent who stays at home to care for children.

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