You are in an archived section of the AIFS website. Archived publications may be of interest for historical reasons. Because of their age, they do not reflect current research data or AIFS' current research methodologies.

Family Matters No. 64 - May 2003

Opinion - Uncertainty, risk and children's futures

David Green and Alison McClelland

Abstract

Many families and children face increased uncertainty and insecurity as a result of radical economic and social changes. The impacts are particularly experienced in the nature of work and family life and have implications for the emotional attachments and the experience of trust of all family members, especially children. In this opinion piece the authors argue that, as the Western world undergoes a period of profound economic and social change, insufficient attention is being paid to how that change, and the consequential risks and uncertainties that are generated, could be managed by governments to strengthen and protect families. They maintain that the material insecurities associated with change are likely to undermine the strength of relationships, so important to family stability and to children's development. They also state that the way family and children's services are funded and delivered means that these problems of uncertainty and relationship instability are compounded. The authors further argue that governments have a clear responsibility to address the distribution of risk and take appropriate action to enhance rather than diminish opportunities for secure and trusting relationships.

Many families and children face increased uncertainty and insecurity as a result of radical economic and social changes. The impacts are particularly experienced in the nature of work and family life and have implications for the emotional attachments and the experience of trust of all family members, especially children. In this opinion piece the authors argue that, as the Western world undergoes a period of profound economic and social change, insufficient attention is being paid to how that change, and the consequential risks and uncertainties that are generated, could be managed by governments to strengthen and protect families. They maintain that the material insecurities associated with change are likely to undermine the strength of relationships, so important to family stability and to children's development. They also state that the way family and children's services are funded and delivered means that these problems of uncertainty and relationship instability are compounded. The authors further argue that governments have a clear responsibility to address the distribution of risk and take appropriate action to enhance rather than diminish opportunities for secure and trusting relationships.

You are in an archived section of the Australian Institute of Family Studies website. Articles in this issue of Family Matters are only available as PDF documents and do not meet the latest web accessibility standards. If you are unable to access any of the articles in this issue of Family Matters please contact us and we will endeavour to provide the article/s you need in a format that you can use.