"All we are saying, give us diapers and no more missiles", tots in protest in Israel

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Thousands of toddlers’ carrying mothers and fathers marched down a boulevard in central Tel Aviv on Wednesday, to protest what they said was the unsustainable cost of living in Israel.

According to the parents who are apparently aggrieved by high cost of raising children in Israel.

Chanting “who cares about missiles when their isn’t money for diapers” and “what’s the point of security when I can’t afford daycare?”, the parents pushed strollers and walked their young children up Ben-Zion boulevard to the intersection outside the Habima National Theater, where they were met by tent city protectors.

The protest march was organized on Facebook by a group of six mothers, who described the difficultly of raising children in a country with skyrocketing real estate prices and nurseries that charge, on average, NIS 3,000 per month per child, as well as the high cost of formula and diapers, and the high number of school vacation days that require finding  babysitters.

The Tel Aviv protest was part of a nationwide series of marches held by parents in Rishon Lezion, Givatayim, Holon, Modi’in, Ariel, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Herzliya, Kfar Saba, Ra’anana, Rehovot, Haifa, Nes Tsiona, Sderot, Beersheva, and Petah Tikva.

The organizers list as their demands a law that will make education free from the age of three months (today it is from age three); price regulation for products like diapers and formula; an extension of maternity leave; an end to the extra fee for strollers on public transport; equal pay for mothers; and further tax credits for parents.

One parent taking part was Eli Elbaz, 35, of Petach Tikvah, the father of two boys aged 1 ½ and 4.

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Elbaz said “we cant make ends meet because each month we spend NIS 4,500 ondaycare, which is almost my wife’s entire salary.“

Elbaz added that he and his wife also spend thousands more for food and everything else.

Elbaz said that he works as an electronic engineer and makes an “ok salary” of about NIS 8,000 per month, but still has to ask his parents for around NIS 500 per month for groceries. Elbaz laughed out loud when asked if he is ever able to set aside any of his monthly income to save for his children’s’ future college education