Published in Cooperation with the Center for Practice Innovations, Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, Case Western Reserve University How do working parents balance their work and child care responsibilities? What if an employee has responsibilities for adult or elderly family members or friends? How similar or distinct are these dependent-care responsibilities in their rewards and their consequences? What about employees who have multiple caregiving roles? In Balancing Work and Caregiving for Children, Adults, and Elders, the authors explore how employees with caregiver roles juggle the responsibilities of work and family. They suggest that, in our current socio/economic reality, dependent care needs to be addressed as a corporate, family, and community concern. Drawing from literature in the field, as well as their large-scale study, they present a thorough discussion of the stressors experienced by workers caught in the often conflicting demands of dual roles. The authors consider multiple factors that contribute to the experience of stress and work-related outcomes such as absenteeism. These factors include: employee characteristics, demands of caregiving and work roles, and the resources available within the workplace and family. Policies, benefits, and services are reviewed, along with the advantages and disadvantages of each for both the employee and the employer. The authors also analyze methods for assessing employee needs and provide recommendations for national and local policies, along with directions for further research. Balancing Work and Caregiving for Children, Adults, and Elders will be essential reading for students and professionals in family studies, management studies, social work, sociology, aging, and public health. “Balancing Work and Caregiving for Children, Adults, and Elders is the most complete and informative book on caregiving I have read. It has a combination of attributes not found, to my knowledge, in any other text on caregiving. It looks not only at people with one caregiving role but also at those with multiple roles; it provides not only a thorough overview of the research, but also a review of a major study on caregiving; and it examines the personal characteristics, demands, resources, and sources of stress in each caregiver category. As a result, the research is extended in an interesting and exciting manner, enabling the authors to draw important comparisons.” -Industrial and Labor Relations Review “This book provides excellent documentation - from an extremely comprehensive empirical study by the authors and an exhaustive review of previous research - for the need for more extensive support for employee caregivers…. The issues addressed in the book are clearly laid out. The empirical work is sophisticated and provides important information. It also presents suggestions about how employers and communities can provide assistance.” --Monthly Labor Review “This is an interesting and important new book, which, for the first time, assembles in one place the most up-to-date information regarding the needs of employees with dependent care responsibilities. Unlike previous volumes, this book adopts a ‘life cycle’ approach to dependent care, including the separate and overlapping demands of caring for children, young and middle-aged adults, and elderly persons. In so doing, it integrates existing knowledge and new research regarding the disparate fields of child care, elder care, physical disabilities, developmental disabilities, and chronic mental illness…. The authors provide human resource professionals, policy makers, and counselors with the tools to develop realistic, cost-effective policies and programs that have the potential to enhance productivity, alleviate role strain, and improve the quality of life for our children, our elders, and ourselves.” --Andrew E. Scharlach, Eugene and Rose Kleiner Professor of Aging, University of California, Berkeley “[This volume] is without question a very impressive addition to the literature in this domain. The authors, Margaret Neal, Nancy Chapman, Berit Ingersoll-Dayton, and Arthur Emlen, represent a multidisciplinary team that has produced one of the most integrative and informative books on the issue of caregiving in the work-family context in the last decade…. This book is unique in two important dimensions. First, the findings and implications are based on a relatively large sample of employees (about 10,000), and secondly, the authors examine the critical issue of those working family members who occupy multiple caregiving roles. This book fills an obvious niche in the literature by comparing employees with responsibilities for the dependents of different age groups (e.g., children, adults, and elders)…. [the first] two sections alone are incredibly rich in information regarding the impact of family caregiving on work responsibilities and are well worth the price of the book, but the third and fourth sections of the book are indispensable and should be “required reading” for those involved in studying and implementing kincare programs in the corporate sector…The entire investigation is couched in solid theoretical framework and the nethodological design is clear and concise…. this volume represents a quantum leap forward in understanding the complex dynamics of mutiple-role responsibilities for family caregivers. The entire presentation of the material from cover to cover is presented in a seamless fashion and could well serve as a text for a graduate level course in family policy.” --Journal of Marriage and the Family “The results [of their research] and their analysis present a vital element in furthering our understanding of the interface between work and home…. The book deserves a wide audience and should be a reference not least to management students.” --Ageing & Society
Chapter 3: Employees Who Have Children
Employees Who Have Children
I am divorced and share joint custody of my 8-year-old son. He is with me half the week and with his mom half a week. I find it very difficult (as I am not married or living with anyone) to juggle work, child rearing, day care, housework, and personal time without feeling stress the majority of time.
Almost 50 years ago, at the height of World War II, women were called to the work force, and the work week consisted of six 8-hour days. A study of absenteeism was conducted at a war plant in Elgin, Illinois (Schenet, 1945). It found that the women had 3 times as much absenteeism as the men; there were also major site differences ...