Grandparental childcare in Australia: gender differences in the correlates of providing regular grandparental care while parents work
AuthorCraig, L; Jenkins, B
Source TitleCommunity, Work and Family
PublisherRoutledge Journals, Taylor and Francis
University of Melbourne Author/sCraig, Jocelyn
AffiliationSchool of Social and Political Sciences
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsCraig, L. & Jenkins, B. (2016). Grandparental childcare in Australia: gender differences in the correlates of providing regular grandparental care while parents work. Community, Work and Family, 19 (3), pp.281-301. https://doi.org/10.1080/13668803.2015.1027176.
Access StatusOpen Access
Grandparents’ regular care for children while parents work has been mostly studied from the parental perspective. This paper focuses on the grandparents. Using the Australian Bureau of Statistics Time Use Survey 2006 (N=7,672) we investigate regular-caring grandparents’ demographic characteristics, which childcare activities they undertake, and how regular childcare provision relates to their time in other activities, subjective time pressure and satisfaction. Results indicate the correlates and nature of regular care differ by gender. Regular and non-regular caring grandmothers’ relative time allocation to different childcare tasks barely differs, while regular-caring grandfathers’ care includes a much higher proportion of active care and travel than non-regular caring grandfathers’. Regular care provision is associated with less leisure than non-regular caring counterparts for both genders, but with only grandmothers’ housework, personal care and sleep time. Providing regular care doubles the likelihood of grandmothers reporting high subjective time pressure compared to non-regular caring grandmothers; there is no association between regular care and time pressure for grandfathers. We conclude that in taking on regular care, grandparents echo the gender patterns found among parents, namely that it is women who are disproportionately impacted by meeting family care needs.
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