Large families from different parts of Spain met on 15 October in Santiago de Compostela, as part of the 13th National Congress of Large Families, organised every two years by the Spanish Federation of Large Families (FEFN) in different cities, to highlight the value of these families and demand greater recognition and economic and social protection, as they have in the rest of Europe.
This year, the Congress was held in the City of Culture of Galicia, in Santiago, under the slogan “Large families, present and future”, to highlight the contribution they make through their children, the fundamental human capital for the development of today’s society and that of future generations.
For the whole family
Designed for the whole family, the programme included a part for parents, with a conference and a round table and, in parallel, children’s activities for children. The morning, after families enjoyed a visit to Santiago de Compostela, one of the most beautiful cities in Spain, noted for its beautiful Cathedral and for being the culmination of the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route.
All children count
The Congress emphasised the solidarity contribution they make to society as a whole, for which they demand recognition and adequate economic and social protection, with family policies that take into account their special needs and do not leave out any of their children. In this sense, the FEFN calls for an end to the discrimination they suffer in public aid and benefits, which do not really take into account family composition. For example, in unemployment benefits, where children are recognised, but only up to the second child; and also in ERTES, where the benefit is not increased beyond the second child. The FEFN stresses that all children count because they all have needs for food, clothing, education, etc., and that it is necessary for benefits to recognise this fact.
The FEFN took advantage of the presence of the authorities to also call for the reform of the Large Families Act, which must be adapted to the needs of today’s society and provide coverage for family situations, such as that of parents with shared custody in the event of divorce, so that both can maintain the title of large family and its benefits. Currently, the law only allows one of the two to keep it.
It also called for the reinstatement of a recently suppressed right that affects the daily lives of many large families when it comes to reconciling work and family life: the rebate on Social Security contributions when hiring support staff in the home, a necessity for 1 in 3 large families, according to the study on large families in Spain carried out in 2020.