Government risks devaluing parenting role

first_img Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos. Government risks devaluing parenting roleOn 9 Sep 2003 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Government efforts to get more parents into work risks sending the messagethat childcare and other unpaid domestic duties are unimportant, a reportclaims. The study, by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, argues that parents of bothsexes are involved in bringing up children and that stereotyped images ofchild-centred mothers and work-focused fathers are increasingly seen asout-of-date. It finds that parents trying to balance work and family responsibilitieswould welcome government intervention to reduce the demand for working weekendsand long hours. Assessing the key findings from 19 separate research studies, the reportconcludes that the Government’s efforts to tackle family poverty by persuadingmore parents to find work risks sending an unwelcome signal devaluing caringfor children and other unpaid work. It warns policymakers that the implication that paid childcare is somehow‘better’ than parental care runs contrary to the instincts of many parents. Concluding analysis by Professor Shirley Dex reports the research foundevidence of widespread dissatisfaction. “The research programme found a lot of tired parents, a large amount ofdissatisfaction, and a desire to cut down working hours, or even give up paidwork altogether. Clearly the preferences expressed by many mothers run counterto the direction of the Government’s ‘welfare to work’ policies since theywould prefer to do less, not more work while their children are young.” www.jrf.org.uklast_img read more