First-Year Maternal Employment, Parenting, and Child Outcomes in Single-Mother Families: Evidence from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study
Lawrence M. Berger, University of Wisconsin at Madison
Jeanne Brooks-Gunn, Columbia University
Christina Paxson, Princeton University
Jane Waldfogel, Columbia University
We examine the effects of early maternal employment on parenting and child outcomes for families likely to have been affected by recent welfare reforms: single-mother families, racial/ethnic minority families, and families who received welfare in the past. Our sample is drawn from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study (FFCW), a birth cohort of children of predominantly low-income single-mothers, more than a third of whom were on welfare at the child’s birth. We use extensive parenting and child outcome measures available in FFCW to examine the effects of maternal employment in the first year of a child’s life on a range of parenting and child outcomes at age 3, both for the full sample of single-mother families and for the sub-sample that was receiving welfare prior to the focal child’s birth. We also investigate whether the effects of early maternal employment vary across racial/ethnic sub-groups and for boys and girls.
Presented in Session 117: Policy and the Family