The Parent Trap: The Economic Insecurity of Families With Young Children

The Parent Trap: The Economic Insecurity of Families With Young Children

Households with children under the age of 5 have significantly lower incomes than households that don't, regardless of parents' age, partnership status, educational attainment, or race, a report from Demos finds. The report, The Parent Trap: The Economic Insecurity of Families with Young Children (40 pages, PDF), found that much of the drop in income associated with having a young child is explained by reduced employment and labor force participation among mothers, including single mothers who do not have a partner they can rely on to provide income. Once their children reach school age, however, labor force participation and incomes rise for nearly all parents, while unemployment and poverty rates fall. The report calls on both employers and policy makers to better support families with young children by addressing issues such as low-paying  jobs, irregular work schedules, discrimination in hiring, the shortage of affordable high-quality child care, and the lack of paid leave.