Interesting topic! France is well known in Europe for having a 'high' fertility rate of at least 2 kids per couple, compared to only 1 point something for every other European country (except Ireland)...
France’s healthy birth rate – the second highest in Europe after Ireland’s – has long been attributed to pro-fertility policies such as free post-natal care, subsidized daycare, allowances for each child born (prime de naissance) and discounts on a range of services for large families.
So the alarm bells were ringing even louder this week in the aftermath of an announcement by the government that it intends to reduce key family welfare benefits in a bid to save €700 million.Under the plans, parental leave will be cut, help in paying for childcare will be reduced for the more well-off, as will the famous "prime de naissance".
Critics have slammed the government for measures they claim will only act to dissuade couples from having children.
“Of course these measures will affect the birth rate. If the state doesn't offer help it's clear that poorer families won’t be able to afford childcare, which will put them off having children,” Thierry Vidor, from the organization Familles de France told The Local.
“This government is taking us back to the nineteenth century,” he added.