Letter : Tax policy pressures mothers to work

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Sir: You report (22 April) on the dilemmas of working mothers and (24 April) on the growing practice of placing babies under three in nurseries. Full Time Mothers supports mothers who choose to spend the early years of their children's lives at home. This often entails sacrifice for such mothers. In addition to financial problems, many feel isolated and diminished in status. We receive a constant stream of letters, saying how glad an individual is to find that she is not alone in her situation.

A couple making a decision that one is to remain at home generally faces a reduction in income. One salary is lost, and this is aggravated by the tax system. We believe that we should be compensated, as happens in France and Germany, by income-splitting to benefit from the individual personal allowance. The Government, by its fiscal policies, reinforces the pressure on mothers to go out to work.

Frances Savin

Chairman, Full Time Mothers

Ingatestone, Essex