The “baby box” distributed to young parents is sowing discord

It is not yet born that it is already disputed. Starting this Monday, for the first time, a government-provided “parenting welcome pack” will be given to young parents in maternity wards, notably in Arras (Pas-de-Calais) and Le Havre (Seine-Maritime). According to Adrien Taquet’s foreign minister, a kind of “French-style baby playpen”, inspired by a model of “playpen” created in Finland in 1938, which is said to have drastically reduced the mortality of young children since in this country, thanks to to improve the hygiene and comfort of the newborn.

What do we find clearly in the French bag that will initially cover 77% of French maternity wards until August, mainly located in rural areas and priority neighborhoods of the city, before being extended to the whole territory?

According to the government, it will be filled with “symbolic objects”, such as a sleeping bag (also called a “sleeping bag”, a type of baby sleeping bag that is generally recommended to prevent cot death during sleep until her two years) but also a natural soap for children, a bib, a youth album and a moisturizer for the mother. “These few everyday objects of every young parent are so many invitations to adopt practices that are beneficial to the safety, health and development of the child,” we state the Secretary of State responsible for Adrien’s family and early childhood Taquet. All these products are manufactured and transported in France by companies that employ disabled workers or immigrants – with the exception of the youth album.

“What’s in this bag for men?” †

However. In recent months, many women have reacted, especially on social networks, to mock the contents of this bag. In particular, the presence of a moisturizer for women, which should remind mothers of the importance of taking care of themselves, is angering feminist associations.

“It must be recognized that some will undoubtedly be very happy with this cream, which is generally an expensive product and which some cannot afford,” admits Amandine Hancewicz, president of the Parents and Feminists Association. But it can also be interpreted as an order to return to your body earlier, which is very inconvenient. Above all, this bag is a bandage on a deep wound. It looks more like a government communication strategy than a real government policy for long-term support for women. By the way, what is meant for men in this bag? Again, the message is that parenting is primarily a women’s affair’, she annoys.

“There is a disconnect between government marketing and the glaring need for human support that women feel during this very delicate postpartum period, in turn berates Fabienne Lacoudre, specialist in gender equality issues in relation to parenthood and founder of the media Milf media. The Finnish box was at least some kind of outfit for newborns with clothes, diapers and parents found financial interest in it. But what about the symbolic objects of the French bag? They are very poorly chosen’, she condemns.

The secretary of state in charge of the family had also announced that a “systematic interview around the fifth week after childbirth” would be introduced in 2022 to identify postpartum depression. It has not yet been implemented, but should be “before the summer of 2022,” the ministry said.