Letter: Love is the key to good childcare

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The Independent Online
Sir: A better start in life may help young people to learn the difference between right and wrong, to benefit from education and avoid crime. Yet the message from Government and Opposition is to encourage jobs for mothers and provision of more child care and after-school clubs.

Mothers at home are ignored in the tax and benefit systems.We urge the transferability of one partner's unused tax allowance to the earning partner. The present system encourages both partners to work outside the home and discourages full-time parents.

Nikki Franses-Jones (Letters,31 October) refers to the system in France. Many French parents choose to remain in the home. They receive the allowances and tax relief that she mentions, and keep them themselves, rather than paying for child-care. Nursery schools and after-school clubs should be primarily for the benefit of the child not the parents.

FRANCES SLAVIN

Chairman, Full Time Mothers

London SW3

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