The study, “Generation Barometer 2009,” is to be officially released on Wednesday afternoon by German Family Minister Ursula von der Leyen. It found that almost 60 percent of Germans think that children are not raised as well as they once were, and that they are less considerate and polite. Older people were most critical of young people’s manners.
Von der Leyen told ZDF that the negative findings in the study reflect the general situation of families in Germany.
Despite the country’s falling birth rate, revealed in new statistics this week to have dropped by 1.1 percent between 2007 and 2008, she said she was determined to continue furthering a better life for families.
“What’s important is to remain on point and not reduce efforts to create a child friendly country,” she told daily Bild.
Balancing work and family can be difficult, she said.
“Young mothers and fathers want to have time for their children without having to take years off of work,” she told the paper. “Therefore we need child friendly working hours with more flexibility between full time and half time.”
The country also needs more space for children in Kindergartens that have better opening hours, she said. While in hindsight much has already been done to help parents raise their children, the changes take time to implement, she added.