More day care places, but still not enough
Germany prepares childcare options for 1 August, when a law guaranteeing the offer of day care will come into effect.
In the run-up to the introduction of a law to guarantee the offer of day care for children under the age of three on August 1, Germany's federal and regional governments insist that they are "close to their objective, because they can provide 780,000 places", reports Süddeutsche Zeitung. And Family Affairs Minister Kristina Schröder has even announced the creation of 810,000 places.
However, the association of German towns [Deutscher Städtetag] and the German association for the protection of children are mistrustful of these figures, notes the daily. Not only are the places poorly distributed, with a shortage in cities that may account for than 50 per cent of demand, but the quality of the care provided for infants is not guaranteed.
With the new law, the German government hopes to boost the fertility rate in the country, which, at 1.36 children per woman, is one of the lowest in Europe.
Read this article in German.