Monday, April 15, 2024
HomeLaura PerrinsLaura Perrins: Three cheers for a family friendly tax system. Pity it...

Laura Perrins: Three cheers for a family friendly tax system. Pity it is in Canada


If you want to see what a conservative government looks like go to Canada. There the Canadian government headed by an actual conservative, Prime Minister Stephen Harper, has introduced a family friendly taxation system to howls of anguish from the liberals.

This is in stark contrast to our own faux conservative Government, whose stated aim so to separate mother from their pre-school children and get us all back to paid work (because caring for your own children is a worthless, pointless endeavour).

The Canadian government has introduced “income-splitting” for tax purposes. This will help families where one spouse earns all or most of the income. The change, which comes as part of a package of pro-family tax and benefit policies, was a key election promise of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives.

The Government is also boosting Canada’s child benefit payments — $160 a month for children under six, up from $100, plus a new monthly benefit of $60 for children aged six through 17, which will replace a less generous tax credit.

According to the National Post, income splitting will allow couples with children younger than 18 to transfer up to $50,000 in income from the higher earner to the lower earner for tax purposes, in order to qualify for a tax credit that will be capped at $2,000. The government claims that its changes to the tax and benefits system will see families with children receive, on average, about $1,140 in tax relief and benefits each year, helping about four million families.

Prime Minister Harper said the package sends a clear message that direct financial support is better for families than a national daycare program would be.

“This is a difference between our philosophy and the others. We have always been clear that money and support to help families raise children should not go into more bureaucracy. It should go to the real experts on childcare. That’s mom and dad, and that is what we are doing.”

How very refreshing to hear mothers and fathers celebrated in this way – instead of the childcare industry. How sensible and indeed conservative it is for a Conservative government to want to empower families to make the best decision as to how to care and provide for their families materially. If only we had a difference in philosophy in Britain between Conservatives and Labour/LibDem on childcare.

Dual-earning Canadian families can also write off some of their external childcare costs against their tax bill. This move is aimed at addressing the penalisation of families who care for their children at home, sacrificing a salary in the process.

Predictably the liberals are not happy. Opposition parties have criticised the move, saying it removes incentives for stay-at-home parents to enter the workforce.

This is what you expect a liberal to stay – that mothers caring for their own children should be bullied back to the workforce whether they like it our not. Sadly for British families, this is also stated aim of the “Conservative” party. This just shows them up to be the leftist party they are.

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