Sign up for our newsletter and keep up-to-date with parenting policy, good practice, research and events
A report published in January 2017 by Family Friendly Working Scotland (FFWS) highlights that parents with low earnings are more likely to be in jobs which don’t allow flexible working options. The research found adults in the most affluent income bracket are 23% more likely to have access to flexible hours than those in the worst-off 20%.
FFWS undertook the research because much of the debate around flexible working in recent years has been concentrated among middle and high income employers and employees, where flexibility has grown to be viewed as a point of competitive advantage. Less attention has been focused on the experiences of low income families, although there is growing concern about the economic situation of ‘just managing families’.
The research indicated that:
In the focus groups and interview many parents described themselves as ‘passing ships’ because they don’t get time together. This is the thing that families would most like to change about their work life balance.
The impact of work on family life, relationships and wellbeing, along with the cost of childcare, leads to many low income parents reducing or giving up work entirely. A combination of flexible working and appropriate support with childcare can reduce stress within the family, enhancing mental and physical wellbeing and supporting family relationships. It can also help retain parents, especially mothers, in the workplace, to the long term benefit of their employers and the wider economy. Crucially, there needs to be genuine choice for families about their balance between work and home, time and money.
FFWS, a partnership between PAS, Fathers Network Scotland, Working Families and the Scottish Government, who fund the programme. FFW aims to increase the amount of workers who have access to family friendly working in Scotland.
Visit: www.familyfriendlyworkingscotland.org.uk/research to access the full report
Follow Family Friendly Working Scotland on Twitter @ffworkscot
Other articles published in our March 2017 newsletter:
Other articles about family-friendly working: