Poland 5th best place in Europe to raise family
Poland is one of the best countries in Europe to raise a family, new research shows.
The We Are Family survey Kitchens compared 25 European countries according to factors that affect modern family life, including parental leave, the cost of living, property prices and childcare costs. These factors were then combined to form an overall ranking. Poland came in fifth, with only Greece, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Estonia ahead of it. Switzerland came last, reflecting its high cost of living, short paid paternity leave and expensive childcare.
Poland ranked highly in individual categories, topping the cost of living one, followed by the other three Visegrad countries. It came fourth in the paid maternity leave category and fifth in the paid paternity leave one, in terms of weeks of full rate equivalent leave. However, the country fared worse on property prices, referring to mortgage as a percentage of income, where it ranked 20th. It also did poorly in the childcare costs category, calculated as a percentage of income, where it came 18th.
In addition to the categories surveyed, Polish families receive other perks. The “500Plus” programme launched by the governing Law and Justice party (PiS) in 2016 gave families a subsidy of 500 Polish zloty (around 120 euros) a month per child, from the second onwards (and from the first in low-income households). As a result, Poland is the only one of the OECD’s 35 members where families receive more from the state than they pay in tax and social security contributions, according to a new report by the organisation. PiS recently announced new measures for families, this time focusing on motherhood, including a bonus for giving birth to a second child quickly and a minimum pension for mothers of at least four children.