Unsociable working hours 'increasing pressure on families'

20-09-2006

Unsociable working hours 'increasing pressure on families'
Working unsociable hours is having a negative effect on family life for many workers, a new study claims.

In almost 90 per cent of families where both parents work, at least one parent works unsocial hours, defined as outside of 8am-7pm, Monday to Friday, the study from the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) found.

Around eight in ten working fathers and more than half of working mothers work some unsocial hours, which can reduce the amount of time parents spend with children.

The average couple mother who works at unsocial times and fathers in sole-earner families both spend less time with their children over a whole week and relatively few parents spend extra time with kids to make up for their partner working unsociable hours, the report claimed.

Michael Clark of research partner, the Keeping Time for Children initiative, said: "The effect of demanding goods and services 24/7 results in added pressure on parents, especially those with low incomes, to work unsocial hours.

"We are depriving children of time with their parents. Parents of school age children should be guaranteed one weekend day off each week."



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