The Women and Equalities Committee has launched an inquiry as new research reveals that many fathers do not feel supported in the workplace to care for their children.
Scope of the inquiry
The inquiry follows on from the Committee's report on the Gender Pay Gap in March 2016 which found that:
- Sharing care between fathers and mothers is the key to reducing the Gender Pay Gap
- Many fathers want to fulfil their caring responsibilities for their children
- The Government’s flagship policy of Shared Parental Leave, introduced in 2015, is likely to have little impact, with a predicted take-up rate of just 2-8%
Research published by Working Families
Research published by Working Families shows that:
- 53% of millennial fathers want to downshift into a less stressful job because they can’t balance the demands of work and family life (Modern Families Index 2017, Working Families and Bright Horizons)
- Twice the number of fathers compared to mothers believe that flexible workers are viewed as less committed and that working flexibly will have a negative impact on their career (Modern Families Index 2017, Working Families and Bright Horizons)
- Men in the UK make up only 25.8% of the part-time workforce. Part-time working is strongly associated with undertaking caring responsibilities at home
- British men spend 24 minutes caring for children, for every hour done by women (Fairness in Families Index 2016, Fatherhood Institute)
1st November 2017
Oral Evidence: Evidence given by Panel of Fathers (anonymised)
Q56 Philip Davies: Witness E, you said you were the first in your [Company] out of 4,000 people or whatever to do shared parental leave. Since you have done it, has that opened the floodgates and lots of other people have now done it or are you still the only one to have done it in your organisation?
Witness E: I do not know about floodgates, but I know a couple of other men in the organisation who have since taken shared parental leave. It is about raising awareness. If you are a dad and want to be more involved in childcare and looking after your kids, you have to want to. At the moment, you have to try to ask questions and look up what your rights are. A lot of dads do not do that. It is about having access to all the information and knowing about the policies that are out there for dads.
The full transcript of the session can be found here