The Best Place on Earth To Be a Mom
The other countries in the top ten on the list are Australia, Ireland, Sweden, Denmark, New Zealand, Finland, Belgium, Netherlands, and France.
Alas, the United States does not fare so well. It ranks 31st in the 2011 Mother’s Index of the Best Places in the World to be a Mother. According to Save the Children, there are several reasons why the United States does not fare better:
1. The United States’ rate maternal mortality is 1 in 2,100—the highest of any industrialized nation. A woman in the United States is more than 7 times as likely as a woman in Italy or Ireland to die from pregnancy-related causes.
2. The United States’ under-5 mortality rate is 8 per 1,000 births. Forty countries performed better. A child in the U.S. is more than twice as likely as a child in countries such as Finland, Greece, or Slovenia to die before reaching age 5.
3. Only 58 percent of children in the United States are enrolled in preschool—the fifth lowest country in the developed world.
4. The United States has the least generous maternity leave policy of any wealthy nation.
5. The United States lags behind other countries in the political status of women. Only 17 percent of congressional seats are held by women, compared to 45 percent in Sweden and 43 percent in Iceland.