Social Barriers to Second Child

Translated by Julia Zhu

According to a report from Southern Metropolis Daily, Shenzhen Municipal Commission of Population and Family Planning released a report that says there are altogether 3,341 second born child in the past 9 months, since the change of ‘one child policy’. But many families who have welcomed their second baby are now facing a dilemma: Their first child face increased difficulties in entering better elementary schools due to the birth of their younger sibling.

With limited education resources in such a big city like Shenzhen, a system of remarks helps to maintain the fairness in allocating the resources. Parents are trying their best to earn more reprieve for their children, blood donations or timely tax payments can help to gain more favourable treatment.

In a regulation recently released by local authorities, having a second child could get a deduction in the eligibility criteria of the first child.

This is a definite concern for many parents and is becoming a new barrier for the second child.

Since the loosening of the strict ‘one child policy’, the number of applications is far less than the government’s expectations. Apart from the education cost, such unfriendly policies have affected decisions.

Having a second child is no longer illegal now, and it helps to restructure the Chinese labor force.

However, some provinces still preserve the policies that give priority to the only child, this kind of action obviously harms people’s enthusiasm towards having a second child.

It is understandable that local governments need some time to adjust to the current regulations to the new change in the family plan policy, but in key fields like education or health care, quick reactions should be made for the convenience of people. Having fair education opportunity is not only a basic human right, but the key in pushing social advancement in the country.

More two-child families would aid in alleviating a quickly ageing population.

Authorities should also upgrade the relevant regulations to support the policy, not leaving barriers in peoples’ way.


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