Argentina’s female president has greenlit a new measure stating that welfare payments will be issued to mothers — instead of fathers — in light of so many families in the country getting abandoned by their patriarchs, The Associated Press reported.
"We have many complaints by women who are abandoned by their husbands, but the guys keep on collecting payments," said President Cristina Fernandez. "So we want the mother to always get the money, except in cases where courts give legal custody to the father. This is fair."
Called it a victory for the Argentine housewives union, President Cristina Fernandez’s measure not only addresses the woes of abandoned wives, but also the financial problems caused by irresponsible fathers.
"It's a desperate situation because the father of my kids sold even their bed," said mother Nerone, 46. She shares one room with her children: Sebastian, 6, Malena, 9, Candela, 10, and Ailen, 17, who recently had a baby of her own.
"The government assumes that if the father is working then you have an income," she said.
On a monthly basis, unemployed Argentine families get $85 per child and $278 per disabled child. Adults are given 80 percent of the funds directly deposited into a bank account each month. The remaining 20 percent is paid annually to families once they prove their children were vaccinated and attended school that year.
"It's well-known that transferring the resources to women results in a greater empowerment for them inside the household and a better use of resources, including food and clothing for their children," professor of Latin American economics at Tulane University in New Orleans Nora Lustig told the AP.