parental leave

Center wants to reduce benefits for non-Swedes

The Swedish Center Party wants to shorten the parental benefit for immigrants to this country.

In an interview with Swedish Radio News on the day after she announced she will be resigning as Center Party leader, Maud Olofsson said the benefit keeps immigrant women from entering the labor market.

Olofsson, who is also Sweden’s Minister for Enterprise in the center-right government, says the number of days under the benefit should be reduced for those not born here.

Parents in Sweden currently are allowed to take more than a year off work during the first years of a child’s life, generally at 80 percent of their salary. The period can be split between the parents, although there is a minimum for each, to encourage men to stay at home with newlyborns.

When Gender Equality Minister Nyamko Sabuni, a member of the Liberal Party, made a similar suggest last year, there was strong criticism that such a plan would discriminate against non-Swedes.

Government split over proposal

Integration Minister Erik Ullenhag, a Liberal, says the problem that needs to be addressed is not immigrants with children, but rather people who arrive in Sweden with children, whether they are immigrants or Swedish citizens returning to this country

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