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Lone parents, poverty and work: policy approaches and lessons from aboard

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The UK government has set two ambitious targets: one to increase lone-parent employment and the other to eradicate child poverty. This article focuses on policy approaches and recent reforms relating to lone-parent employment in five countries (Australia, France, the Netherlands, Norway, and the US) in order to place UK policy development in a wider context. It then focuses on two countries with different approaches to the issue of combining paid work and care work. Both the US and Norway can be described as countries with 'adult-worker' orientations but implemented in different ways, and with different outcomes for lone parents. We argue that if the UK government wishes to achieve both aims - increasing loneparent employment and eliminating child poverty - it should look to the Norwegian rather than the North American model. This means that it will be necessary to consider the broader issues of gender and income inequality, as well as the specific policies related to lone-parent employment.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 2002

More about this publication?
  • Benefits (now known as The Journal of Poverty and Social Justice)

    New aims and scope

    Benefits (to be known as The Journal of Poverty and Social Justice from 2010) provides a unique blend of high-quality research, policy and practice from leading authors in the field related to all aspects of poverty and social exclusion. The journal has changed its name to reflect its wider scope and has growing international coverage.

    Content spans a broad spectrum of poverty-related topics including social security, employment and unemployment, regeneration, housing, health, education and criminal justice, as well as issues of ethnicity, gender, disability and other inequalities as they relate to social justice.

    With succinct articles ideal for teaching purposes and students, The Journal of Poverty and Social Justice combines an original and exciting mix of:

    • scholarly, peer-reviewed articles
    • cutting-edge discussions of topical issues
    • a comprehensive round-up of key publications

    It will be an essential resource for academics, policymakers and practitioners working in these areas.

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