"For mothers-to-be, there's not only the need to maintain income but also the natural instinct to be with their babies at least for the first few months of their lives." (Tony Abbott, Battlelines, 2009, p 101)
Ah, mums-n-bubs - makes you all gooey just thinking about them, doesn't it? How lucky we are to have as our leader a man for whom the welfare of young mothers and their babies has always been at the forefront of his thinking.
Still, that should come as no surprise really, because over in PM Abbott's patch, Sydney's verdant North Shore, there is a profound understanding that no expense is too great when it comes to keeping mothers and their babies close and comfortable following the joy of childbirth.
In fact, one particularly close-knit North Shore family has shown that, when it comes to mothers and their babies, only the very best in postpartum pampering will do. In fact, you'd have to say that it's gone to the most extraordinary lengths to ensure that the sacred, mother/child relationship is not in any way compromised. Meet the Hartmans:
"The heated fall-out between former school friends has spread to engulf one of Sydney's elite families, as private emails reveal two of obstetrician Keith Hartman's sons were planning to bribe a controversial jockey and allegedly looking to defraud the tax office... In [an] exchange in April 2008, Ed asked John: 'How much cash do you have lying around?' 'About $70,000,' he responded minutes later. Ed told him their father, Keith, dubbed 'obstetrician' to the stars' after delivering the latest generation of Packer and Murdoch babies, needed $250,000 for a refinance of the mothers' retreat at his exclusive clinic. The retreat, in Lavender Bay, costs up to $1300 a night, and is for new mothers who want to rest before returning home." (When friends fall out: insider trading court told of emails, Hannah Low, Sydney Morning Herald, 14/11/13)
The latest generation of Packer* and Murdoch babies... OMG, how totally adorable they must be!
However, if mother and baby aren't strictly North Shore. If they're, say, from down in the boondocks somewhere, or - worst case scenario this! - they're boat-borne, brown, Mahometan terrorist infiltrators, what then? Well, as they say, there's no rest for the wicked. So meet Latifa and Farus:
"An asylum seeker who was moved off Nauru to give birth is being locked up for 18 hours a day in a detention centre in Brisbane while her week-old baby remains in hospital with respiratory problems. The case of Latifa, a 31-year-old woman of the persecuted Rohingya people of Myanmar, has shocked churches and refugee advocates. She was separated from her baby on Sunday, four days after a caesarean delivery, and has since been allowed to visit him only between 10am and 4pm in Brisbane's Mater Hospital. The boy, named Farus, has respiratory problems and needs round-the-clock medical care." (Asylum seeker mother kept from newborn baby in Brisbane, Heath Aston, Sydney Morning Herald, 14/11/13)