Abstracts & Papers in Stream 5

Child poverty policy has been paid attention as a social investment and preventive strategy recently. Especially, employment strategy tends to be more emphasized than simple income maintenance in social investment states and workfare discussions. Also, Studies about the effect of employment strategy find that maternal employment is more effective in reducing child poverty.

However, those studies fail to consider two points that can affect outcomes. One is the characteristics of labour market and the other is who provides care service. First, each state may have different level of wage gap or occupational segregation by gender and educational attainment, which result in different outcomes of "escape-from-poverty-through-work" strategy. Second, how care service is distributed among public, private and informal sector could have impact on the welfare of children through care service cost and stratification of service quality. 

Concern about child poverty is increasing lately in Korea. Weak institutional welfare and increase of inequality, younger workers' unemployment and family dissolution in Korea has endangered household with children. Thus, in this paper, child poverty rate and trends are looked around first, and then the relationship between maternal work and child poverty is examined focusing on characteristics of labour market and care service provider. 

As a result of analysis, first, households with children don't have higher risk of poverty than those without children, but poverty rate for households with pre-school children has been increasing slightly in 2000s in Korea. Second, maternal employment has lesser effect on poverty reduction in Korea relative to other OECD countries, which seems to result from higher wage gap by gender and large share of irregular and low pay jobs in mothers' work. Third, in case of care service, working parents depend highly on informal sector such as other family members and private sector in Korea, which leads to larger burden of care cost among low-income households. Therefore, not simply encouraging work, but gender equity policies as well as active labour market policies are needed to use maternal employment as a child poverty policy.

Full paper download: Kim W_child poverty and maternal employment.pdf

The purpose of this research was to explore the employees' parental involvement and parental responsibility with the benefit of corporate childcare policy. Ten interviewees who were from double-career families were selected because they had at least one young child aged below 6 and were using childcare services provided by corporations. Data was collected through semi-structured interviews. Three issues were discussed in this paper:

A real balance between work and family? The purpose of corporate childcare services was to reduce employees' stress between work and family. Extend childcare time might release employee's working stress, however, it may not benefit to children's social development and parent-children relationships. Parents' responsibilities could not be excluded from their childcare services. A new form of Elite cluster - dual roles of colleagues and parents Employees who used corporate childcare services also played the roles of parents in the children's nurseries. The colleagues organized an informal parents' association who would help each others in caring children. With the relationships of informal parents' association, the employees had more opportunities to meet and communicate with colleagues in other departments. Corporate and nurseries working together; he corporate and affiliated nurseries were partners. They organize family activities suitable for their employees. The nurseries provided key issues/ topics to promote employees' parenting. An outdoor activity arranged by nurseries attracted children and their families because they considered it is a good opportunity to build up friendships and the employees believed that it also benefited to their relationships with other colleagues. The partnership of companies and nurseries created a win-win strategy.

Full paper download: Yeh Y_parental imvolvement and responsibility.pdf

Background Informal unpaid carers for people with ID are usually female and mothers. Recent Western literature has focused attention on the concept of work-family reconciliation including the gender issue. Without doubt, there are mothers of people with ID who leave their paid work due to the conflict between work and family care-giving. We examine the effects of care work on full-time employed, part-time employed and non-employed mothers by studying whether there are differences between these three groups in terms of social demographic context, quality of life, various factors related to their involvement in labor force and their QOL.

Materials and Methods We use data from the 2008 census survey on ID in Hsin-Chu City, Taiwan that included the primary family carers of 796 adults (aged 18 or older) with ID who were living with their families. In total, 302 of them were the adults' mothers and were of working age (younger than 65). These 302 mother carers became our study population. The survey package contained standardized scales and collected carer health, social support level, QOL, use of family support services and the characteristic data.

Results It was found that 37.4% of the mothers of working age were involved in full-time employment, 16.2% of them were involved in part-time employment and 46.4% were non-employed. The statistics revealed that, compared to their employed counterparts, the non-employed mothers were older, had older adult children, had children with a lower level of ADL, had received less years of education, had a lower level of health status, had a lower level of social support, and were more likely to be from a low income family. Logistic regression analysis showed that the factors that are significantly related to the mothers' employment status were the adult child's functioning in terms of ADL, the mother s' age, and the family income. Compared with the Taiwanese population in general, the mean QOL score for the mothers in all three of these three groups were lower for all the four domains assessed (physical, psychological, social relations and environment). When comparing between these three groups, the mean score for the overall QOL and for each domain (with the exception of the domain of social relationships) were all significantly lower among the non-employed mothers than among the full-timely employed mothers. Surprisingly, after acknowledging the effect of health status, family income and social support of the participants, logistic regression analysis did not reveal that the mothers' employment status was a significant predictor of the working age mothers' quality of life. We also found that the mothers' involvement in employment was determined by their age, adult child's ADL and family income.

Conclusions The present study is a start in addressing the issue of paid work and unpaid work among mothers of people with ID in Taiwanese society. Perhaps these results can become a benchmark for similar measurements carried out by women's movement. These results may then help to frame policy efforts related to the current advocacy for the creation of a supportive environment for lifelong woman carers.

Full paper download: Chou Y_employed and non-employed mothers.pdf

Recent approaches in drug prevention have increasingly recognized the vital role of parents as risk or protective agents in youth development. However, programs that focus on Chinese families are still limited, and few have adopted robust research methodologies to demonstrate its efficacy. This paper will present the results of a two- phase project on Hong Kong parents with reference to anti-drug work and discuss the impact of the findings on drug prevention policies and strategies. Phase I of the project was a large-scale survey on 5,612 parents and explored the motivational factors and barriers to their participation in drug-prevention programs in Hong Kong. The findings facilitated the development of a drug-prevention program that was theory-driven and tailored for Hong Kong parents who claimed their adolescent children manifested at risk behavior. Phase II of the project was a randomized-control-trial study which involved over 200 parents of at risk youths to finish a multi-session education program. The evaluation study collected convincing evidence to demonstrate the efficacy of the program because after training, the parents in the experimental groups generally performed better than the control group parents in terms of knowledge of drugs, attitude towards drugs, sense of self-efficacy, perceived family cohesion and management of parenting stress. While the findings confirmed the usefulness of this program and attracted additional funds for public dissemination, much more needs to be done to effectively mobilize parents as partners in preventing and fighting youth drug abuse. The paper will also discuss the implications of the project in theory, research as well as anti-drug policies and services.