German election campaign ignites debate over role of working women and child care
Germans will head to the polls on September 22nd and childcare policy has become one of the hottest election issues. The country recently passed legislation which guarantees every child over the age of 12 months a slot in a government subsidized daycare facility. The country already provides benefits for parental leave that last up to 14 months. Chancellor Angela Merkel has also put the expansion of the German school day back on the agenda—German primary schools currently finish at 11:00am, which can make it difficult for two parents to work full time. Elizabeth Heineman, a professor of history, women, gender and sexuality at the University of Iowa who has lived in Germany, explains the debate. (Photo: AP Images).