There's a story in today's Guardian about how Britain is seemingly penalising working mothers. http://observer.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,,2026203,00.html
It is an interesting point. Apparently many women lose their jobs once they become pregnant. I've noticed that the British are the masters at squeezing people out of things by using roundabout yer legal ways and this is how pregnant women are squeezed out of their jobs even though on the face of it, you cannot fire a woman for being pregnant.
Like the article mentions, the birth rate in the UK is low. In order to maintain certain services there will have to be a certain number of people working over the next generation and as it stands there won't be unless they vastly increase immigration (another story) and get the birth rate up.
And in order to increase the birth rate they will have to make it easier both economically and time wise, for couples to have children. There is a terrible stigma attached to having kids if you are a professional woman. You can do it but to succeed at work you will have to be a lousy mother and neglect your kids. The other alternative is to not have kids, and more and more women are deciding to do that.
Some cultural changes need to happen fast if this situation is to be remedied. For a start, society has to be intelligent and begin to respect the job of raising kids properly and this job will have to be supported. Honestly, isn't the outcome obvious if we don't? More and more unruly, uneducated young people with no social skills.