Australian family values
Initial findings from a new Institute study highlight the ways that parents' workforce participation is influenced by the values and preferences they hold for combining work and family life.
In the 1990s we are seeing rapid changes occurring in the nature, structure and organisation of work. People's decisions and choices about workforce participation and working hours are made in the context of social and economic opportunities and constraints. At a personal level this translates into the values and priorities people hold regarding their family life and their income earning requirements. Sometimes this results in compromises between actual and preferred working hours.
The private decisions people make about their working lives have implications for public policies related to the provision of income support and services such as child care and elder care.
The Australian Family Life Course Study, conducted by the Australian Institute of Family Studies in 1996, collected information from people in the workforce about their actual and preferred working hours, and from others not in the workforce about their work and family preferences.
Information was gathered from parents aged 25-50 years whose youngest child, in the age groups 0 - years, 5-12 years, and 13-18 years, lived with them in the household. The main focus of this analysis is on mothers with children aged up to 12 years.
The shift from the traditional notion of men as sole breadwinners and women as caring for the children at home and doing the housework is illustrated in responses to the questions asked in the Institute's Australian Family Life Course Study about the values people hold.
Only one in four (23 per cent) of both men and women agreed with the statement: "A husband's job is to earn the money, a wife's is to look after the home and family".
Around two-thirds of men (65 per cent) and women (69 per cent) also agreed that: "Both partners should contribute to the household income".
When it came to the question asked of couples: "Who takes the main responsibility for being the economic provider?", six in ten men and women said that the male partner took more responsibility, three in ten couples agreed that such a responsibility was shared equally, and the remaining couples (just under one in ten) said that the woman was the main breadwinner.
The age of youngest child clearly affects workforce participation rates for mothers, but is almost negligible for fathers.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS 1997), overall in Australia in 1997:
- 52 per cent of mothers in couple families and 34 per cent of sole mothers with their youngest child under the age five were in the workforce;
- by the time the youngest child is five to nine years of age, 72 per cent of mothers in couple families and 62 per cent of sole mothers were in paid work;
- by the time the youngest child is aged 10-14 years, 76 per cent of mothers in couple families and 61 per cent of sole mothers were in the workforce;
- for fathers in couple families, regardless of age of youngest child, 95 per cent were in the workforce.
Of mothers with children under the age of 18 years who participated in the Institute's Australian Family Life Course Study, two-thirds were in the paid workforce and one-third were not in paid work. In contrast, 91 per cent of fathers were employed.
Fathers' participation and preferences
Men's workforce participation and their preferences about working hours have historically been consistent with the fact that full-time work over the life course has been both the norm and the preferred option for men.
However, the economic climate in recent decades, combined with continuing industrial restructuring, has altered the employment opportunities and standard working hours for men.
Overall, 68 per cent of employee fathers and 70 per cent of self-employed fathers were working more than 41 hours per week. About 29 per cent of employees were working longer than 51 hours per week, but almost half (48 per cent) of the selfemployed worked these longer hours.worldwide insurance cover stylish camera backpack boker plus worldwide communication model outdoor garden rug study of rights and duties of members of society crossword all time international goal scorers gourmet society vaccines worldwide norwich and peterborough building society f1 channels worldwide coworking space greenwich flight arrivals belfast international 10 best winter sports worldwide redhead international yorkshire building society savings international harvester nike worldwide air force 1 international fc white christmas nails coworking providers examples of good communication skills deaf society uk vaccine update worldwide stylish beach bags selina coworking creative coworking outdoor daybed stylish baby girl names uk international dialling code fifa direct communication kent building society women coworking space coworking places espace de coworking real christmas trees near me stylish trendy women's hiking boots communication style wide fit stylish shoes stylish bunk beds kaplan international pathways outdoor net lights communication in health and social care labs coworking grantley adams international airport 7.1 describe the potential risks presented by the use of electronic communication devices bing worldwide harry kane international goals nigel frank international coworking space angel christmas events near me christmas tree drawing coworking office plan pernicious anemia society stylish raincoats for ladies uk edinburgh coworking space international investments pushpa collection worldwide alpine garden society cheap outdoor furniture stylish fonts cctv camera wireless outdoor high society film crypto bull society southbank christmas market lost society battersea how many suicidal deaths in 2022 worldwide corner outdoor sofa north east autism society coworking space bucuresti kansai international airport british society of gastroenterology cheap worldwide travel insurance oxford coworking worldwide healthcare trust aldi christmas opening hours definition of communication political communication communication plan project management colony coworking space worldwide freight services outdoor kitchen units outdoor ceramic plant pots stylish table lamp communication plan example celebrities worldwide tes international jobs lamm communication dregs of society crossword clue stylish office chairs uk outdoor cable international driving permit uk yorkshire building society opening times society dregs crossword clue argos outdoor christmas lights last christmas lyrics pet society stylish pannier bags international space station tonight stylish funeral outfits christmas pudding nationwide building society telephone number arthur christmas cognizant worldwide limited coworking space munich aldi outdoor heater worldwide foods (bradford) aldi outdoor furniture quotes about communication nationwide building society internet banking stylish computer desk wooden bench outdoor internal communication examples santander international worldwide insight a christmas number one reverse stylish vehicles merry christmas wishes 2022 student communication speech oral communication outdoor shops reliance worldwide corporation effective communication skills christmas breakfast ideas international football scores waitrose christmas 2022 what to write in a christmas card how to find coworking spaces stylish article written worldwide vaccines crisis communication agency communication sciences nationwide building society login coworking space bangalore outdoor tortoise enclosure stylish tote bags coworking office space london stylish umbrellas stylish waterproof jacket women's outdoor parasol girls christmas dress new look christmas jumpers england international football fixtures luxury coworking london bath building society for intermediaries means of mass communication crossword clue christmas garland how many astrazeneca deaths worldwide worldwide freedom rally july 24 stylish electric showers coventry building society online formal communication