Different barriers to working for mothers with health problems

Different barriers to working for mothers with health problems

Media release — 20 July 2007

Employment aspirations of non-working mothers with long-term health problems by Jennifer Renda, Australian Institute of Family Studies, Research paper no.40, 2007.

This research looks at the employment aspirations and expectations of mothers with and without long-term health problems, and the relationship between their desire to work and the reality of their participation in the labour force.

'My hypothesis was that mothers with long-term health problems are likely to have different reasons for not entering paid work, and to need different types of support and assistance to help them find suitable work'.

'The research showed that non-working mothers with long term health problems were just as likely as other mothers to aspire to be in paid work. But the evidence also suggests that they are less likely to achieve that desire,' Ms Renda said.

Overall, non-working mothers with long-term health issues have more difficulty than other mothers in entering the workforce and they also have lower predicted earnings.

'Policies that reduce previously identified health related barriers to work and increase the confidence of mothers with long-term health issues are most likely to succeed in helping them to enter the paid workforce,' Ms Renda said.

Media contacts

Luisa Saccotelli
0400 149 901
Aileen Muldoon
0419 112 503