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'Earnings gap' for antenatal classes

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Research from the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) has suggested that an income gap exists when it comes to women attending antenatal classes.

The survey, carried out by the RCM and Netmums, found that almost 75% of women on incomes of lower than £15,000 do not attend antenatal classes.

It found that nearly half (44%) of women in the group hadn’t been offered the classes.

Furthermore, for those that were offered the classes, 29% did not bother to attend..

The classes are available on the NHS or through the National Childbirth Trust (NCT) and other groups. However, the poll suggested that women not having NHS classes also missed out on those run by organisations such as the NCT.

Also, more than a quarter (26%) of women with incomes below £15,000 who were expecting their first baby were not offered classes, the report found.

In comparison, when it came to women expecting their first child who were on incomes of more than £40,000, just 9% were not offered classes.

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