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Costa Rica

  • By: Justin Corfield
  • In: Encyclopedia of Motherhood
  • Edited by: Andrea O'Reilly
  • Subject:Sociology of Gender, Parenting, Maternal Health

Located in Central America, the Republic of Costa Rica was ruled by Spain until independence in 1821, joining the United Provinces of Central America, and becoming an independent republic in 1838. With an economy based on agriculture, and also textiles—and recently tourism, from 1870 until 1899 it was ruled by a liberal government, and in 1936 the government started establishing a social program which quickly made it the envy of the region.

Less than half (46.1 percent) of women age 15 and over in Costa Rica were in the labor force in 2006, and their employment-to-population ratio was 41.9. Women are entitled to four months of maternity leave at 100 percent of salary.

Abortion is legal in Costa Rica only if necessary to save the life of ...

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