United States ranks second to last for raising a family: index

Parents might be surprised to hear this.

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The United States has been ranked among the worst countries in several categories that make up the Raising a Family Index created by research travel site Asher & Lyric, which based its study on six criteria.

The website, which was started by couple Asher Fergusson and Lyric Benson-Fergusson, researched “35 OECD countries (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) to see which are the best for raising a family in 2020,” the infographic shares.

The highest-rated nations were all in Europe – Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Finland, which each getting an A+ final index score.

The highest-rated nations were all in Europe – Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Finland, which each getting an A+ final index score.
(iStock)

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The “definitive ‘Raising a Family Index’ is comprised of 30 critical statistics from trusted international sources.” Each country is given a score based on these statistics across six categories: safety, happiness, cost, health, education and time. Within those categories, each is broken down into five subcategories to come up with a final grade.

Overall, the United States was the second-worst wealthy nation to raise a family in 2020, failing specifically in safety, cost and time, the website’s data concludes. It was just above Mexico, which was in last place at 35.

“The first time I looked at the data, I was in disbelief,” said co-founder Lyric Benson-Fergusson of the findings to the New York Post.

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Where the U.S. faltered, according to the stats, were in criteria such as maternity and paternity leave, vacation days, out-of-pocket health spending, child care costs, homicide and school shootings – the United States was the highest in school shootings, significantly, compared with every other country, with 288 incidents from 2009-2018. The top five countries had zero.

The highest-rated nations were all in Europe – Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Finland – with each getting an A+ final index score.

The United States did manage to pull a C+ in happiness and education. The happiness score was determined by human freedom index, suicide rates and family income inequality, among others, while education took into account the enrollment rate for students 15-19, 20-24, as well as reading, math and science performance.

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The study is the latest on the travel site, which frequently reviews travel safety.


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