Stay-at-home moms should be paid over $160,000 a year to care for their kids, study says
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Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang has brought a lot of attention to the idea of implementing a universal basic income on America. His "freedom dividend" would pay every American $1,000 a month to spend as they choose.

In addition to helping Americans deal with a future in which the labor market will be upended by automation, this basic income could allow Americans to rethink what we see as work and nurture what Yang calls a "human-centered" economy.



"It would actually help build a more human-centered economy, what I call the trickle-up economy. Because it will allow more people to do the kind of work that they want to do — including people like my wife who's at home with our two young boys, one of whom is autistic," Yang said on a recent appearance on "The View."

"And right now the market values her work at zero," Yang continued. "The GDP values her work at zero. If you start putting resources into our hands that actually expands what we think of as work."

"Well now, you're talking about paying women for doing housework, doing work at home, being mothers," co-host Joy Behar responded. "That's a good idea."

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Yang's dividend would help financially compensate stay-at-home parents and incentivize others to choose parenting over a career.
However, according to Salary.com, $12,000 a year to stay-at-home parents is about $150,000 too little.

The company released a report that shows that stay-at-home moms (what about dads?) should be earning $162,581 a year for their labor. According to Salary.com, the average stay-at-home mom has a hybrid role that includes, but is not limited to the following professions:

Academic adviser

Accountant Buyer CEO

Coach

Day care center teacher

Janitor, SR

Judge

Marketing manager

Plumber

Photographer

Psychologist

Staff nurse

Teacher

Salary.com's estimate does a good job at showing the myriad skills that stay-at-home parents have to master to do their jobs. More importantly, it shows just how important they are not only to their families but to the community at-large.

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While the U.S. does very little to help new mothers, eleven countries in Western Europe have embraced the ideas of compensating parents.

According to Vox, here are countries with a "universal child benefit" and what they pay out to families with two children:

Luxembourg: $8,750

Belgium: $5,709

Austria: $5,704

Germany: $5,620

Ireland: $4,060

Sweden: $3,507

Finland: $2,883

Denmark: $2,794

Norway: $2,576

Netherlands $2,404

France: $1,779

It comes down to the basic question: What is work? Every day we go to our jobs to make money to take care of our families. Shouldn't those who are on the front lines of helping their families receive some sort of compensation as well?

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Anne Hebert, a marketing writer living in Austin, TX, jokes that her closest friends think that her hobby is "low-key harassment for social good". She authors a website devoted entirely to People Doing Good Things. She's hosted a yearly canned food drive with up to 150 people stopping by to donate, resulting in hundreds of pounds of donations to take to the food bank for the past decade.

"I try to share info in a positive way that gives people hope and makes them aware of solutions or things they can do to try to make the world a little better," she said.

For now, she's encouraging people through a barrage of persistent, informative, and entertaining emails with one goal in mind: getting people to VOTE. The thing about emailing people and talking about politics, according to Hebert, is to catch their attention—which is how lice got involved.

"When my kids were in elementary school, I was class parent for a year, which meant I had to send the emails to the other parents. As I've learned over the years, a good intro will trick your audience into reading the rest of the email. In fact, another parent told me that my emails always stood out, especially the one that started: 'We need volunteers for the Valentine's Party...oh, and LICE.'"

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Photo by Phillip Goldsberry on Unsplash

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