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Linkages Between Work and Family One of the questions motivating this study is to what extent changing family structures and employment patterns (discussed in Chapter 2) have interacted to create problems in the workplace and in the family. A particu- lar concern is the effects on children. Historically, researchers as well as employers tended to treat work and family as separate worlds (Kanter, 1977b). In the past decade, however, there has been increasing recognition of the multiple levels of interdependence between work and family (Voy- danoff, 1987; Baca-Zinn and Eitzen, 1990~. The relationship, although it has changed over time, has always had both positive and negative aspects. Employment is a major component of family well-being. It is the pri- mary source not only of income and various types of social insurance (in- cluding health insurance, Social Security, private pensions, disability and unemployment insurance) but also of other benefits, such as self-esteem. Thus it is one of the most essential sources of both economic and psycho- logical security. The need for financial security increases when one has a family. Married men, in particular, have substantially higher labor force participation rates than do unmarried men. Long hours, rigid schedules, and an excessively high level of involve- ment in work, however, can also have negative consequences both for the individuals involved and for their families. Among other things, they may reduce the quality of care available from working family members for their dependents. Similarly, the responsibilities of caring for family members can affect work performance in a number of ways. In this chapter we review what is known about the linkages between work and family: how they fit together and how they conflict. To the extent possible we summarize the workplace issues for women and men 42
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 43 with different racial and ethnic backgrounds, in different kinds of work- places, and for different family structures. For example, the pressures gen- erated by time spent at work and scheduling conflicts precipitate different stresses and coping responses in female-headed households, dual-earner households, and male-earner, two-parent households (Piotrkowski, 1979~. Although men and women are both vulnerable to stress when they are employed and have household responsibilities, women are at greater risk because they perform the bulk of household tasks. Men have been increas- ing the time they spend in housework and child care (fleck, 1989), particu- larly husbands who care for children during mothers' working hours (Presser, 1989~. Data show, however, that women continue to bear most of the re- sponsibility for children and elders, whether or not they work for pay, and employed women, especially mothers, have less leisure time than men (Staines and Fleck, 1983; unpublished data, Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan, 1989~. For example, in a study of 1,500 employees in two companies, the combined time spent on work, home chores, and child care in a week was, on average, 84 hours for married mothers, 79 hours for unmarried mothers, and 72 hours for fathers, married or unmar- ried (Burden and Googins, 1987~. It has been suggested that employed women with a family tend to have two jobs, one in the workplace and one at home, while it is still assumed that men's primary responsibility is their paid work. Multiple levels of interdependence make it impossible to consider the sphere of family and the sphere of employment as separate worlds (Baca- Zinn and Eitzen, 1990~. The precise nature of the linkages varies consider- ably, depending on the structural features of both household and work set- tings (Voydanoff, 1987~. Therefore, we assess the effect of labor force participation on the family, of family characteristics on performance in the workplace, and the combined effects of multiple roles and quality of life. We first examine studies concerned with various aspects of workplace con- ditions, especially those over which employers have some control, such as schedules and leaves, and their impact on employees and their dependents. We then review research on the effect of domestic circumstances, such as a breakdown in child care arrangements, on job performance. We also con- sider the interaction and feedback, stressful or satisfying, between family and work. Existing investigations range from descriptive case studies, based on small nonrandom samples or employees of one firm, to research using na- tional samples. Each approach has its strengths and limitations. Case studies provide in-depth information about particular groups, members of a single occupation, or employees of one firm, but they are primarily descrip- tive and do not provide a sound basis for generalizations or for conclusions about causal relationships (for reviews see, for example, Friedman, 1989b;
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44 WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE Galinsky, 1989b). National survey data based on representative samples allow generalizations and some inferences about causality, especially if longitudinal data are available, but individuals are usually the unit of analy- sis, with little or no link to a particular enterprise; such data are therefore often not suitable for investigations of employer policies and their impact on the workplace (for reviews see, for example, Fleck, 1983; Repetti et al., 1989; Hayes et al., 1990~. Drawing conclusions from such diverse research, based on vastly different data and methodology, is often difficult. EFFECTS OF WORK ON FAMILY Employees sometimes report that family responsibilities interfere with their work, but even more so that work interferes with their family. In a survey of two-earner families with children age 12 or under (done for Fortune magazine), 16 percent of men and 18 percent of women reported family interference, while 32 percent of men and 41 percent of women reported that paid work interfered with their family life (Galinsky and Hughes, 1987~. There is also evidence that people believe they perform better at work than at home: Burden and Googins (1987) found that 86 percent of people questioned in their two-company study rated their job performance as "good or unusually good"; only 59 percent rated their fam- ily performance that way. Their interpretation is that jobs take priority. It may also be the case, however, that people set higher standards for them- selves at home than on the job. Research in this field has focused on the effects of employment on fami- lies, specifically the impact of women's labor force participation, presum- ably because men were expected to work for pay, while women were still expected to be responsible for homemaking. Initially, research attention centered almost entirely on potential negative effects on marriage and chil- dren of women's employment (see, for example, Hoffman and Nye, 1974; Spitze, 1988~. Recently, however, scholars have broadened their studies to encompass the complex interactions between work and family, as well as the multidimensional characteristics of jobs, families, and individuals. Income and Identity Men's employment has been taken for granted because it has been the major source of income for the vast majority of families. Income is crucial to family well-being for several reasons. Not only does it determine the basic standard of living, but also a minimum amount of steady income is required to maintain family stability and cohesion (Cherlin, 1979; Fursten- berg, 1974; Rodman, 1971~. In addition, employment is a central part of the personal identity of most men. Therefore, when a man is not employed,
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 45 he and his family are likely to have problems. (For a discussion of the negative effects of men's unemployment, especially on children, see Voydan- off, 1987). Only recently have researchers clearly recognized the importance of wo- men's employment in increasing family income; employed wives often help keep their families out of poverty (Blau and Ferber, 1986~. When both spouses work full time all year, wives' earnings, on average, constitute 39 percent of family income (Bureau of the Census, 1986~. Women's employ- ment also tends to raise their status in the eyes of other family members, as well as their own. For instance, husbands are more likely to respect work- ing wives' decision-making ability and to listen to their opinions (Blum- stein and Schwartz, 1983~. About half of all employed women are not married, and they usually depend on their job to support themselves as well as a source of social support (Repetti et al., 1989~. Health Both longitudinal and cross-sectional studies suggest that in general em- ployment does not have negative effects on women's physical or mental health, despite frequent problems of role conflict and overload (see Repetti et al., 1989, for a review). It appears to have beneficial effects on physical health particularly for unmarried women, black women, and Mexican Ameri- can women. Some, though not all, studies have also found employed women to be less depressed than nonemployed women. Positive findings from cross-sectional studies, however, must be dis- counted because there is substantial evidence that healthier women are more likely to enter the labor force. The causal relationships between employ- ment and health are not clear. Preliminary findings from a national longitu- dinal survey suggest that health is an important determinant of labor force participation (Mares, 1982~. Women who are not employed frequently re- port poor health as a reason for not working (e.g., Kessler and McRae, 19821; however, when homemakers reporting poor health as a reason for not working were excluded from the analysis, Jennings et al. (1984) found that homemakers reported better health than employed women. Repetti et al. (1989) conclude that more longitudinal data and more appropriate methods of analysis are needed to distinguish between the effects of health on em- ployment and the effects of employment on health. More sophisticated studies indicate that it may not be employment status per se but the sense of independence and control brought about by work that contributes to the positive outlook of employed women. Rosenfield (1989) suggests that perceived control influences the relationship between employment and role strain. That is, employment is not always a mental health benefit for women when it trades one source of low control (house
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46 WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE wife status) for another (a job with little power). A key factor appears to be the woman's preference: two reviews conclude that there are positive effects on women's health when there is congruence between what she is doing and what she would like to be doing (Repetti et al., 1989; Spitze, 1988~. There is also a modest amount of evidence on the relationship between family responsibilities and health. Women who care for dependents most of all those with a dependent spouse- have been found to be more prone to depression than other women, especially if they have to give up their job (Holmes and Rahe, 1976; Kanner et al., 1981~. Men also suffer depression when caring for elders, particularly spouses (McLanahan and Monson, 1989~. Marital Satisfaction The interaction effects between women's employment and marital status are mixed. Women's employment is associated with higher divorce rates: this might be interpreted to mean that such marriages are worse or, alterna- tively, that divorce is more affordable. Entering employment could intro- duce strain, or wives may enter the labor force when the marriage is shaky. Some studies have shown that husbands of employed women are more likely to be depressed and experience greater job pressures (Kessler and McRae, 19821. Others found that both spouses experience greater marital satisfac- tion (e.g., Simpson and England, 1982~. Recent research has also found that, as the proportion of dual-earner couples rose, there was increased emphasis in families on conversation, shared leisure time activities, em- pathy, and companionship (England and Parkas, 1986), and the proportion of respondents who said that their marriage was either very happy or above average rose from 68 percent in 1957 to 80 percent in 1976 (Thornton and Freedman, 1983~. Clearly, the effect of wife's employment on marital satisfaction depends on a variety of factors. For example, according to one small survey, greater financial security, older age of children, and higher levels of community involvement are all associated with more satisfaction (Thomas et al., 19841. In general, favorable outcomes are most likely to prevail when wives' em- ployment is consistent with both partners' preferences (Ross et al., 1983~. When husbands' preferences are inconsistent with wives' employment sta- tus, women show lower self-esteem and increased depression (Kessler and McRae, 1982~. Research results regarding the effects of employment on marriage continue to be mixed depending on how the questions are ap- proached. In a comprehensive review of the literature, Spitze (1988) re- ports that recent studies using large national samples find no overall effects of wives' employment on the marital satisfaction of either husbands or wives. She also concludes that causal ordering with respect to employment and marital satisfaction or dissolution is not clear.
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 47 Children's Well-Being There is general consensus that a mother's work status per se has no predictable effects on her children's development (Kamerman and Hayes, 1982; Hayes et al., 1990~. Rather, a variety of specific factors interact with . ~ . ~ . . . mother7s employment In determining the outcomes. In general, when moth- ers work by choice and child care is satisfactory, family stress is not too great and their children are as well adjusted as those with mothers at home. For infants, a small number of stable caretakers to whom the child can become attached is also important (Zigler and Frank, 1988~. Although less research has been done on the effects for older children, there is evidence that much depends on what mothers do and how they feel about it (Bloom- Feshbach et al., 19821. Children of employed mothers are less likely to subscribe to traditional gender stereotypes and in general have more positive views of themselves and their families (Hoffman, 1987~. When mothers work by personal choice, daughters are likely to view both parents with admiration; however, sons of working mothers in low-income families tend to be more critical of their fathers. When mothers work in nontraditional occupations, their daughters in college are more inclined to aspire to such occupations (Heyns, 1982~. Sons of employed middle-class mothers tend to do less well in school than their counterparts with nonemployed mothers, but this does not hold for lower-class sons (Bronfenbrenner and Crouter, 1982~. In her review of the literature, Hoffman (1987) finds that dissatisfied mothers, whether em- ployed or not, appear to have more poorly adjusted children, suggesting that mothers' satisfaction, rather than employment status, may influence children's adjustment. Research on employed minority mothers, although sparse, shows consis- tently favorable effects on children's achievement except when arrange- ments for their care are inadequate (Heyns, 19821. One study focusing largely on minority children suggested that, when mothers' work is highly regulated and demanding, children are more likely to conform to school requirements and to study more diligently (Piotrkowski and Katz, 19821. A mediating factor for the effects of parental employment on children's well-being is the quality of child care 1 ~ Despite earlier fears, there is no evidence that high-quality out-of-home care is harmful to children over age 1, and in some cases positive effects have been documented. For infants, the evidence is mixed. Group sizes, staff/child ratios, caregivers' training, stability of care, daily routine, and organization of classroom space are factors in quality care (for extensive reviews of the developmental literature, see Hayes et al., 1990; Phillips, 19871. For instance, children's cognitive and social development has been found to be positively related to group size, teacher qualifications, and the goals of the program, such as focus on
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48 WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE cognitive development (Ruopp et al., 1979~. Particularly for children from low-income families, high-quality programs appear to have a positive effect on intellectual development, perhaps because they compensate for poor family environment (Slaughter, 1983; Ramey et al., 19851. With respect to infants, research so far has been inconclusive. Stress in the form of role overload and role conflict appears to be most strongly felt by employed women with infants. A Swedish study shows that employed mothers report more daily fatigue and psychological distress after the birth of a first child (Moen, 1989~. Limited evidence suggests that the stress felt by some employed mothers may have negative effects on the relationship with and the development of their infants (Zigler and Frank, 1988; Moen, 1989; Brazelton, 1986; Clarke-Stewart and Fein, 1983~. It is clear that infants need high-quality care from a small number of caretakers, with adequate opportunity to establish close bonds in order to enhance healthy emotional development (Zigler and Frank, 19881. Full- time purchased child care in the first year appears to be associated in some children with insecure attachment to their mothers, often considered an important component in healthy development. Reliance on only one mea- sure, however, as well as other methodological constraints, makes interpre- tation of the finding difficult (Hayes et al., 1990~. Studies also find that group day care at this early age seems to lead to greater orientation toward peers and more competence in interacting with them (Clarke-Stewart and Fein, 1983) but to decreased responsiveness toward adults (Belsky, 1988~. The physical health and safety of children in child care centers are also important issues. A comprehensive review (Jarman and Kohlenberg, 1988) of over 200 existing studies is generally reassuring, but there is agreement that more research is needed on health and safety. Preschool-age children in centers were found to be more likely to contract common infectious diseases than children at home, although there tend to be no unfavorable long-term effects. Group child care also increases the risk of several seri- ous but very rare infectious diseases. Based on more limited research, no evidence has been found of increased risk of neglect, injury, or any kind of abuse in child care centers. The National Research Council's Panel on Child Care Policy (Hayes et al., 1990) concluded that organized care does not involve major risks to children's health. Other Dependents With rising life expectancy, the number of elderly parents and spouses in need of care has been increasing. The continued influx of women into the labor market has raised questions about possible declines in the availa- bility of services needed by these people, as well as by a smaller group of disabled working-age adults.
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 49 Existing evidence on the effects of women's labor force participation on disabled and elderly dependents is inconclusive. Some studies show that women's employment limits caregiving for elderly parents (Lang and Brody, 1983; Brody and Schoonover, 1986~. Other studies have found no effect on the helping behavior of daughters (Cicirelli, 1981; Stoller, 1983~. There is little evidence on caring for a disabled spouse, who may or may not be elderly. An early study, however, shows that wives of disabled men are likely to enter the labor force in response to the illness and related economic loss (Franklin, 1977~. Thus, employment may offer economic relief and make possible the purchase of care. It may also provide some psychological relief from the demands of caring, which causes depression, as discussed earlier. At the same time, the additional demands of employ- ment add to the mental and physical stress of caregivers and potentially reduce the quality of care for the disabled and the elderly. Minority Families Although research specifically on the linkages between work and minor- ity families is sparse, there is evidence of differences between minority and majority families, as well as among various minority groups (Harrison, 1989; Gerstel and Gross, 1987~. Primarily, studies have shown that the generally poorer jobs and lower incomes of minorities have a negative ef- fect on their families. Recent investigations suggest that deteriorating economic conditions have had a major impact on family structure. Wilson (1987) documents relationships between male joblessness and high divorce rates, low remar- riage rates, and high ratios of births to unmarried mothers. He concludes that the explosive growth of black families headed by women has been mainly an outgrowth of changes in the U.S. economy, which resulted in declining employment opportunities for inner-city blacks, particularly men. Among Hispanic communities, important variations exist in economic conditions. While economic conditions for Puerto Ricans have deteriorated in the past decade, the well-being of Cuban Americans has improved con- siderably, and there has been little change for Mexican Americans (Bean and Tienda, 19881. Understandably, then, there is little evidence of consis- tent changes in family structure for the Hispanic community as a whole (Baca-Zinn, 1989; Moore, 1989~. Structural changes have been greatest for the groups that experienced the most serious economic dislocations. In some cities, Puerto Rican unemployment, poverty rates, and the proportion of families with female heads is reaching or exceeding those of blacks. Variations in childrearing strategies, value socialization, extended kin- ship ties, and sex roles may also contribute to different perspectives on work and family (Harrison, 19891. Hence, family care supports and prob
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so WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE lems tend to vary, and it cannot be taken for granted that findings from studies not specifically focusing on these groups are applicable to them. Using three national data sets on blacks, whites, and Americans of Mexi- can descent, Jackson and Antonucci (1989) found that the relationship be- tween roles and well-being or happiness is complicated for each of the populations. While most people reported being satisfied with their lives, the level of satisfaction was influenced by many factors, including gender, race, and employment status. In general, blacks experienced the highest levels of stress, job related and otherwise, and also had the most chronic health problems. Other smaller studies did not find some of the same differences. Among a sample of black inner-city mothers, approximately 29 percent indicated experiencing moderate to severe family-work conflict (Katz and Piotrkowski, 1983), a figure comparable to that found in a representative national sample by Pleck et al. (1980~. Job autonomy and job demands, not income, were the key correlates of strain among the inner-city sample. Similarly, Fernan- dez (1986) reported no differences in levels of stress among men in various racial and ethnic groups. More surprisingly, he also reported that black women felt less family-work stress than did either white women or other women of color. An examination of the effects of employment and parental and marital status on the health of a sample of 712 Americans of Mexican descent showed that employment was associated with less illness for both men and women and parenthood with less chronic illness for women (Krause and Markides, 1985~. For women there were also interesting interactions be- tween employment and marital status, suggesting that earnings and the greater self-esteem associated with employment are particularly important for single women. Work Characteristics Schedules The 8-hour day and the 40-hour week have been the typical work pattern in the United States for the last several decades. As we saw in Chapter 2, however, a substantial and growing minority of workers are employed part time. Married women constitute the largest group of part-time workers. Married men, in contrast, are most likely to work extended hours and to hold more than one job, slightly more so when their wives are not employed (Moony, 1981; Moen and Moorehouse, 1983~. In addition, 13 percent of women and almost 16 percent of men work fixed nonday shifts, while 4 percent of women and 9 percent of men work rotating shifts (Presser, 1989~. Almost one-fifth of workers in the 1977 Quality of Employment Survey
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 51 complained about excessive work hours (Staines and Pleck, 1983~. Several studies, using different data sets, have concluded that long hours are associ- ated with higher levels of family-work conflict and strain for both male and female workers (Burke et al., 1980; Mortimer, 1980; Staines and Pleck, 1983; Voydanoff, 1984; Voydanoff and Kelly, 1984) and at times for the worker's spouse (Keith and Schafer, 1980~. One study concluded that the number of hours that wives work increases the divorce rate when the hus- band disapproves of her working (Spitze and South, 1985~. No evidence of negative effects of long hours on marital satisfaction, however, has been found by several other researchers who investigated that question (Piotrkow- ski and Crits-Christoph, 1982; Staines and Pleck, 1983; Voydanoff, 1984~. Husbands of women working part time tend to experience higher levels of marital satisfaction than those married to full-time workers or full-time homemakers (Moore and Hofferth, 1979; Railings and Nye, 1979~. Also, these women themselves tend to be particularly happy with their children (Hoffman, 1987~. Part-time workers, however, often are poorly paid, re- ceive fewer or no benefits, have less interesting and less satisfying work, and have little opportunity for promotion; Repetti et al. (1989) and Hoffman (1987) find that this may contribute to stress and other negative outcomes. The amount of time worked does not by itself account for all the effects of work. How the time is arranged how many hours per day, how many days per week, how many weeks per year, weekdays or weekends, day shift or night shift, regular hours or shifting schedules and the rigidity of the schedule are also important. According to a national survey, 27 percent of workers claimed that schedules interfered with their family life, and 42 percent complained about such other problems as irregular or unpredict- able schedules, early starting time, or late leaving time (Quinn and Staines, 1979~. Women were more likely to report problems with schedules; men were more likely to report problems with amount of time worked (Staines and Pleck, 1983~. Research on men working shifts found generally negative effects, both with respect to health and their family life (fleck, 19831. Night shifts were likely to cause problems with husband-wife relationships; afternoon shifts caused problems with parent-child relationships (Most et al., 1965~. The effects of shift work on families is also influenced by the degree of control people have and the predictability of the schedules. For example, Staines and Pleck (1983) found that the negative relationships between nonstandard work schedules and the quality of family life are strongest when workers have the least control over their schedules that is, working an afternoon shift decreases time spent with children when they have little control over their schedule, but increases parental time when they have medium and high control. A small study of nurses found unpredictability of schedules to be a problem. Women reported that hours and days off continually changed,
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52 WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE with very little advance notice, making care arrangements difficult (Sexton, 19821. More recent studies show an increase in child care by fathers related to shift work (Presser, 19891. As noted above, parents with young children appear to use shift work in order to provide personal care for their children. Presser finds that this strategy increases positive interaction between fathers and children (Presser, 1988; Presser and Cain, 1983~. .Iob Demands Family ties may inhibit geographic mobility, and family members are often negatively affected by a move. A spouse may have to give up a job and may have problems finding an equivalent one in the new location. Children will have to change schools, which is often a painful experience, especially for teenagers. All of them will be uprooted from a familiar community, and they are likely to leave valued friends behind. These are real costs, although difficult to measure. And yet, if earnings increase be- cause of a move, the family as well as the worker benefits. Frequent job-related travels also are likely to put strains on family life and tend to interfere with regular household responsibilities. Traveling salespersons, long-distance truck drivers, flight attendants, and military per- sonnel are obviously affected, but so are many others, such as public offi- cials and managers in multiplant businesses. Research has been done on how families of corporate executives and military personnel cope under these circumstances. In a review, Voydanoff (1987) concludes that moves and traveling have negative effects, but they are mitigated by factors such as family cohesion before the move, spousal attitude, and coping strategies. The extent to which the demands and gratifications of a job (both physi- cal and psychological) match the abilities and aspirations of the worker will contribute to work-family satisfaction when there is a good fit and to work- family conflict when there is a bad fit. Only a small minority of workers, mostly highly educated professionals and managers, seem to be more in- volved in work than in family (fleck and Lang, 19781. Such high involve- ment can cause strain in dual-career couples (Bailyn, 1970; Ridley, 1973) and can cause conflict between work and family responsibilities for men (Young and Wilmott, 1973~. However, high job satisfaction has also been found to reduce depression and to increase levels of health and energy (Burden and Googins, 19871. This outcome is frequently found for married women and single mothers. Again, however, interpreting the relationship between employment and health requires caution. More broadly, it is not the number of roles that people are filling such as worker, homemaker, and caregiver that causes problems. Several ex- perts have found that multiple roles are beneficial (Baruch et al., 1987
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 53 Epstein, 1987;GoveandZeiss, 1987;PiotrkowskiandRepetti, 1984). For example, a 1978 multistage probability sample of 700 white adults in the Detroit metropolitan area found that the number of roles individuals were involved in did not diminish physical health (Verbrugge, 1987~. On the contrary, there was a positive relationship for both men and women be- tween number of roles and health, although the subjective perception of great role burdens had a negative relation to health outcomes. Indicators of the quality of roles, using occupational stressors, such as a heavy workload or lack of control, and home stressors, such as the number of children, have been found to be associated with various physical and mental prob- lems for women (Repetti et al., 1989~. For example, longitudinal data from the Framingham Heart Study show that mothers in clerical jobs who have three or more children are at increased risk of coronary heart disease (LaCroix and Haynes, 1987~. Employer Support In addition to job characteristics, the attitudes and actions of managers and coworkers, perhaps independent of official company policies, may also affect workers and their families. Support includes an understanding environment, as well as specific actions to help solve problems, such as access to a telephone in the afternoon so that parents can be in touch with children after school. Support is part of the workplace culture (discussed in Chapter 6), the set of norms, values, and informal mechanisms that shape day-to-day life in an organization. For example, just being able to discuss a family problem with supervisors or coworkers may provide an environment that people find helpful. Lack of support is illustrated by such behavior as making it clear that personal problems are to be handled away from work or prohibiting the use of leave time for family matters. In general, lack of social support at work has been associated with de- pression, hospitalization days, and physical complaints. Supervisors who are not understanding of family problems contribute to increased risk of coronary heart disease for clerical workers (Haynes et al., 1984) and, more broadly, to conflict, stress, and health problems (Galinsky and Hughes, 1987; Galinsky et al., 19871. Increased depression among women bank tellers was related to rigid social climates at work (Repetti, 19871. In one study probing business changes that would reduce child care prob- lems, 56 percent of respondents identified training to sensitize managers (Galinsky and Hughes, 1987~. Lack of employer sensitivity and/or accep- tance may reduce the extent to which programs such as parental leave are used. One U.S. study showed that 63 percent of all employers, and 41 percent of those at companies with a leave policy, thought fathers should not have any leave when their wives gave birth (Catalyst, 19861. Pleck
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54 WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE (1988, 1989) and Stoiber (1989) report some negative attitudes among Swedish employers and colleagues toward fathers who take parental leave. This may help explain why relatively few fathers have taken such leaves and the proportion is not increasing more rapidly. There appear to be differences in corporate support for employees even among companies that are quite similar in their benefits and policies. Bur- den and Googins (1987), for instance, report that respondents in one com- pany were twice as likely to consider the corporation sensitive to their needs as were those in a second company. The authors attribute the differ- ence to a set of messages that are transmitted through the corporate culture that are more intangible than the policies and programs. EFFECTS OF FAMILY ON WORK In the past, researchers paid little attention to the effects of family re- sponsibility on people's performance at work. As more people assume dual responsibilities, however, employers are increasingly concerned with the effects that families have on worker performance, particularly on recruit- ment, retention, mobility, absenteeism, and tardiness. New research now focuses on the possible conflict for men and women among dependent care, housework, and jobs that may create stress and hence have a negative im- pact on the discharge of their duties at work. Stress is defined as "any event in which environmental demands, inter- nal demands, or both, tax or exceed the adaptive resources of an individual" (Monet and Lazarus, 1977~. Both major life events, such as the birth of a child (Holmes and Rahe, 1976), and minor events or daily hassles, such as being unable to get the family out the door on time in the morning (Kanner et al., 1981), can tax individuals' resources, leading to anxiety and depres- sion and hence to less than optimal functioning at work and at home. Care for adult dependents, for example, can lead to increased depression and emotional and physical strain (National Long-Term Care Survey, in U.S. Congress, House, 1987; Brody, 1981; McLanahan and Monson, 1989~. At the same time, there is also evidence that caring for children, a spouse, or a parent may provide the caregiver with satisfaction, a renewed sense of use- fulness, and self-worth (U.S. Congress, House, 1987~. Numerous studies have reported the existence of some work-family in- terference or conflict that may result in stress. For instance, working long hours limits the time a person is available for family activities; caring for a sick child means there is less time to carry out work responsibilities. Staines and Pleck (1983) found that one-third of both men and women in the 1977 Quality of Employment Survey claimed some or a lot of such interference when asked, "How much do your job and your family life interfere with each other a lot, somewhat, not too much, or not at all?" Similarly, Voydanoff
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 55 (1988), using the same data set, showed that mean interference or conflict, ranging from 1 (low) to 4 (high), was 2.21 for men and 2.22 for women. Reviewing eight company studies, Friedman (1989b) found that the propor- tion of workers who reported encountering conflict ranged from 23 to 64 percent. In a study of 166 married couples in the Detroit metropolitan area, men and women reported stress on almost one-third of the days worked during a 6-week period (Bolger et al., 19891. Although people are more likely to report that work interferes with fam- ily, they also report that family interferes with work. Among four em- ployer-based studies, estimates of family interference with work ranged from 13 percent of men (Galinsky and Hughes, 1987) to 39 percent of women (Fernandez, 1986~. Crouter (1984) found home-to-work negative spillover more likely for wives than husbands. Based on evidence from a national sample of 500 couples, Staines and Pleck (1983), however, re- ported similar responses for women and men. Burden and Googins (1987) found no sex difference when domestic roles of men and women were held constant. Bolger et al. (1989), using longitudinal data and seven measures of stress, found negative home-to-work spillover significant for men but not for women, even when controlling for work characteristics. It is clear from these studies that at least some workers perceive a nega- tive impact of family responsibilities on work. There is considerable evi- dence that the conflict is greater for parents than for people without chil- dren at home and especially for single parents, but conflicting evidence whether it is greater for women than for men. Since women do have more family responsibilities, they would be expected to report more such con- flict; to the extent they do not, it may be that they have developed better mechanisms for coping with such stress. Labor Force Participation There are several indications that men with family responsibilities are more likely to be in the labor force and are more highly motivated. The labor force participation rate of men with children in their household is 96 percent (Hayghe and Haugen, 1987), that of male heads of single-parent families is 88 percent (Norton and Glick, 1986), substantially higher than for all men. Married men are also the group most likely to work overtime and to hold more than one job. The number of hours they work increases with the number of children they have (Smith, 1983~. Similarly, a study of white-collar workers found that married fathers and sole male providers are more involved in their work than other men (Gould and Werbel, 1983~. It has been suggested that this explains why married men earn more than single men even when a number of characteristics are controlled for (Hill, 1979; Bartlett and Callahan, 1984~.
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56 WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE A very different picture emerges for married women, particularly for those with children. Almost none of these women has a spouse who is a homemaker, and although their labor force participation has increased rapidly in recent decades, it nonetheless remains lower than that of other women. Married women with children are also more likely to work part time. This pattern is at times regarded as evidence of their weak commit- ment to work, but many of them-particularly low-income women say they would work full time if reliable child care were available (Kisker et al., 1989; O'Connell and Rogers, 19831. Over the last 20 years the effect of maternity on women's labor force participation has changed considerably. Using data from the national Sur- vey of Income and Program Participation, O'Connell (1990) found that the proportion of women who worked during their first pregnancy rose from 44 percent in 1961 - 1965 to 65 percent in 1982- 1985. Fully 80-90 percent of these women worked full time. Only 28 percent of them quit their job after becoming pregnant in the 1980s, compared with 66 percent during the 1960s, and half of those who quit returned to work within a year after the child's birth. Teenagers, high school dropouts, and minority women were least likely to be employed when pregnant, and those that were employed were also least likely to return to work within 6 months. The two main factors deter- mining mothers' return to work, however, were how long they had worked before the birth and whether their employers provided maternity leave. Single mothers appear to be strongly motivated to work (O'Connell, 1990), even though very poor mothers of young children continue to be eligible for Aid to Families with Dependent Children. A number of studies have found that the cost of child care also influ- ences the decision to return to work and the number of hours worked (Presser and Baldwin, 1980; O'Connell and Rogers, 1983; Leibowitz and Waite, 1988; General Accounting Office, 1987b; Blau and Robins, 1986~. Several of these studies further showed that cost was especially important for low-income women, single women, and black women. Not surprisingly, availability of child care is an even more serious constraint among young, low-income couples, although it is not uncommon for spouses to work dif- ferent shifts so that they do not need out-of-home child care (Presser and Cain, 1983; Presser, 1989~. Sonenstein and Wolf (1988) also found that some mothers took shift jobs, while their children are cared for by rela- tives. It is not clear, however, whether they accept shift work in order to accommodate child care or whether those were the only jobs they could find. For nonstandard work hours, there is almost no nonfamily care avail- able (Hayes et al., 1990~. Needless to say, not only the availability of child care but also the avail
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 57 ability of jobs determines how much women and men work, for they are not always able to find employment that enables them to work the preferred number of hours. Over the past 20 years the percentage of household heads reporting in the Current Population Survey (CPS) that they would like to work more or fewer hours during the year has remained stable, at approxi- mately 15 percent and 5 percent, respectively (unpublished data, Panel Study of Income Dynamics, 1990~. In the 1977 Quality of Employment Survey, however, 53 percent of mothers and 38 percent of fathers claimed they would prefer to work fewer hours even if it meant less income (Moen and Dempster-McClain, 1987~. According to Presser (1989), the 1985 CPS data showed that these proportions had become considerably smaller, but the change may have been due to different wording of the question. Also, 17 percent of mothers and 28 percent of fathers who were fully employed indicated they would prefer to work longer hours in order to earn more. On the whole, these findings are consistent with a shift toward greater preference for income at the expense of home time. Although there is considerably less research on the relationship of em- ployment and providing care for dependents other than children, the data that are available show some interesting correlations. The National Survey of Caregivers found that 9 percent of persons in the sample who had been working full time left the work force to care for a disabled friend or rela- tive: 12 percent of daughters and 5 percent of sons left their jobs to become caregivers. Of the 1 million caregivers who had been employed during the caregiving experience, 20 percent cut back on hours, 29 percent rearranged schedules, and 19 percent took time off without pay (Stone et al., 1987~. McLanahan and Monson (1989) found that married women, but not single women, reduced their labor force participation to care for parents. The fact that married women and those with higher incomes are more inclined than others to drop out of the labor force or to work part time is often taken as showing lack of commitment to work. Moen and Smith (1986), however, argue that behavior is not an appropriate measure of atti- tude, but that psychological commitment or involvement in work is a sub- jective orientation measured by questions about continuing to work if there were no financial need. Using data from the 1976 Panel Study of Income Dynamics they found that a majority of women claim they would work even if they did not need the money; commitment is very strong among those who work part time, and even among those who temporarily give up paid employment. Mothers of preschoolers who did work full time often did not show strong commitment but worked for financial reasons. It ap- pears that factors such as other obligations, inability to make satisfactory arrangements for dependents, and cultural beliefs about care, in addition to commitment to work, affect labor force participation.
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58 WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE Absenteeism and Tardiness Absenteeism and tardiness are two of the most readily measured effects of family on work. Recent studies (e.g., Bonilla, 1989) conclude that gen- der per se does not influence absenteeism rates. Rather, they are related to children and family responsibilities. Because women are more likely to have these responsibilities, they have increased rates of absenteeism. Three primary sources of family-related absence are illness of another family mem- ber, finding care arrangements for dependents, and making alternative ar- rangements when the usual ones fail. Overall, the number of days lost for these reasons is small, as reported in national surveys. The reports may be inaccurate, however, because people may falsely report themselves ill in order to care for a family member. While the reported loss is small, the differences by family status are infor- mative. Analysis of data for the period 1979 to 1983 from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (unpublished data) suggests that workers lose an average of approximately 1 day per year because of the illness of another family member. Only men with a nonemployed wife lost less time; other people with children lost more time. In 1983, the largest losses, almost 4 days per year, were for single women with children under 5. The number of hours lost increased with the number of children. Also, blacks with young children lost more hours due to the illness of others than did other groups. We can only speculate that this difference may be related to poor health, lower income, and less medical care. Corporate surveys corroborate these findings and provide additional in- formation (for summaries see Creedon, 1989, on elder care; Friedman, 1989b, on child care). In a study of 5,000 employees in five companies, 67 percent reported that child care interfered with work and that absenteeism was one of the main results (Fernandez, 1986~. In addition, medical and dental appointments for children were found to be a problem, often resulting in absenteeism. The highest rate of work interference was reported by parents of children ages 2 to 5: 50 percent of women and 26 percent of men reported such interference. In one employer survey, 75 percent of the re- spondents noted lateness and unscheduled days off among the work- related effects of caregiving (Lucas, 19861. The illness of dependents, especially children, is likely to cause work interference (Galinsky and Hughes, 1987; Fernandez, 1986~. Children's illness was involved for 56 percent of mothers who were absent for 1 to 3 days during the year, 78 percent of those absent 4 to 6 days, and 82 percent of those absent longer than 6 days (Fernandez, 1986~. Based on National Health Interview Survey data, the General Accounting Office (1989) esti- mates that the number of workers eliglible to take leave for seriously ill children at 66,OOO, for seriously ill parents at 182,000, and for seriously ill
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 59 spouses at 746,000 (firms with 35 or more employees and serious illness defined as 31 or more days of bed rest in a year). Maintaining child care arrangements is the second major problem related to absenteeism. Of mothers with at least one child under age 15, 5.9 per- cent reported missing some work during the month prior to the survey as a result of a failure in child care arrangements (Bureau of the Census, 1987~. Analysis of data from the 1979 Panel Study of Income Dynamics showed that 3.2 percent of husband-and-wife couples reported that someone had to stay home because child care arrangements broke down in the past year, for an average of 4.1 days. The highest rate of disruptions, 7.8 percent, was found for those who place children in another home as the primary means of care. Employers who have studied these issues report a higher incidence of child care arrangements failing and affecting absenteeism. In one study, within the 3 months previous to the interview, 40 percent of the parents had experienced a disruption in their child care arrangements, 20 percent of them three or more times. And 39 percent of the parents whose child care arrangements had failed said they had come to work late or left early (Gal- insky and Hughes, 1987~. Resulting absences were reported more frequently for women than for men and more frequently for families using out-of- home care, with lower incomes, and with fewer children. In larger families, older children may take care of younger ones. Emlen (1987), however, found the greatest number of disruptions for parents at work resulted from children looking after themselves. The third problem is finding child care. In one study, 25 percent of the women and 10 percent of the men thought that finding quality child care was somewhat of a problem or a big problem (Fernandez, 1986~. The For- tune study found that people who had a problem finding care were also more likely to be absent (Galinsky and Hughes, 1987~. In a survey of 4,000 - DuPont employees (DuPont Co., 1989), over 25 percent depended on child care. Although women were only one-third of the sample, they constituted half of the child care users. The substantial number of men using child care, however, suggests that it is not only a concern for women. A majority of the parents reported having difficulties finding child care, particularly for infants, and after-school and summer care for school-age children. In view of all these difficulties, it is not surprising that parents occasionally bring children to work. In one firm, the number of children at work became so numerous that the practice was prohibited (Burden and Googins, 1987~. Other Effects on Work Family characteristics influence not only labor force participation, ab- senteeism, and tardiness, but also many other workplace issues, such as
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60 WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE unproductive time at work, energy expended on the job, motivation, and geographic mobility. Although relatively little evidence is available on any of these, they should be mentioned. Unproductive time spent on the job because of responsibility for other family members, especially children, appears to be rather common. Even parents who do not report problems with child care acknowledge interrup- tions at work. Although these become less frequent as children grow older, 39 percent of women and 17 percent of men with children between ages 15 and 18 still report such interference (Fernandez, 1986~. Workers are also likely to spend time worrying about dependents. However, Fernandez points out that people often make up for lost time during lunch breaks, evenings, and weekends. It has been suggested, most notably by Becker (1985), that women spend less energy on paid work because they use so much energy on their household responsibilities. No proof of this hypothesis has ever been of- fered, however, and at least one study (Bielby and Bielby, 1985) claimed that the opposite appears to be true. Because their conclusion is based on subjective self-reporting, it is also open to challenge. Somewhat related to the question of energy is the issue of motivation. Married men, who are generally seen to be the family's primary wage earner, are expected to be more eager to obtain training, to work hard, and to compete for promotions than married women, who are often viewed as secondary wage earners and also likely to spend less time in the labor force. This line of reasoning tends to be part of the traditional explanation of occupational segregation by gender (Polachek, 1979, 19811. A great deal of the literature in this area has focused on the problems of people in professional or managerial jobs, especially when both spouses are in such occupations. Although such couples may be less in need of assistance than other kinds of families, they are frequently the focus of employer policies. High-level jobs are associated with more intense re- sponsibilities, causing more stress (Shine et al., 1987; Fernandez, 19861. Very high income, as well as low income, appears to be related to increased vulnerability to stress for women with children. We have not, however, found evidence in the published employer studies of the turnover and result- ing costs to employers reported by Schwartz (1989) on the basis of her unpublished work. In a review of the status of women scientists and engineers, Zuckerman (1987) concludes that marriage and motherhood do not have consistently negative effects on employment status, publication rates, and salaries. While most people with doctoral degrees work full time, a survey of Ph.D.s in science and engineering found that, of those working part time, 37 per- cent of women, compared with 4 percent of men, gave family responsibili- ties as the reason (Office of Scientific and Engineering Personnel, 19891.
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 61 There also continue to be some differences between women and men in management and the professions in their willingness to permit location of the workplace to determine their residence. Traditionally, men tended to follow jobs, and women followed men. Employers could expect to recruit highly qualified men from throughout the country and to move them to different locations as the occasion arose. In the 1970s, a study of people with Ph.D.s found that, even among this highly educated, professionally oriented group, men were far more likely than women to move, or refuse to move, in order to further their own career rather than that of their spouse (Ferber and Kardick, 1978~. This pattern may have changed somewhat in recent years. From the point of view of business, however, this may not be an improvement, for men would then be less likely to put job before family. Men's decisions are also influenced by other family considerations. Men with school-age chil- dren are less likely to move than others (Bureau of the Census, 1983), and among men between the ages of 30 and 39, the probability of moving declines most among married men with children (Sandefur, 1985~. Also, in a DuPont survey (1989), 20 percent of child care users said they avoid jobs involving travel or relocation. Recently, a considerable controversy has arisen because Schwartz (1989), accepting the view that most mothers cannot be expected to make a strong career commitment, proposed a separate family-oriented track, now popu- larly referred to as the "Mommy track," to avoid possible problems of high turnover of management women in large corporations. Such an approach would require couples to make a choice, and make it very early in their lives, whether the wife should have children or a high-level career. Among the objections that have been raised to this approach are that it perpetuates the traditional notion that only women have family responsibilities and ig- nores the fact that many women are successfully combining family and high-level careers. Furthermore, there is reason to look askance at a society that divides people into two distinct and separate types, family oriented or career oriented (Spitze, 1988~. Couples in which both partners have careers, however, represent a rela- tively small proportion of families. In the Quality of Employment Survey they constituted only 13 percent of the sample, compared with 59 percent in which neither spouse was in a professional or managerial job. There is need for more research on single parents, minority couples, and dual-earner couples in which spouses are blue-collar and service workers; such families tend to have far fewer resources either to pay for the care that is available or to buffer the stress that can come from less desirable work (Spitze, 1988; Ferree, 1987; Fernandez, 1986~. One British survey of 304 couples with low occupational status, for example, shows that, among other factors, low work commitment and low aspirations were significant predictors of stress
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62 WORK AND FAMILY: POLICIES FOR A CHANGING WORK FORCE (Lewis and Cooper, 1987~. The authors concluded that high-status careers enable people to secure high-quality care for their families and satisfaction from their jobs, which are likely to protect them from pressures. Employer studies in the United States have also found that women in nonmanagement jobs, particularly single parents and low-income women, report more work- family interference with negative consequences on the job. Furthermore, low incomes were related to greater conflict and child-care-related absen- teeism for men (Fernandez, 1986; Shinn et al., 1987~. CONCLUSIONS Early research on work and family focused on the negative effects of women's employment on children and families and emphasized the con- flicts for dual-career couples. Newer studies have expanded their focus to investigate both positive and negative aspects of men's as well as women's employment on work and family life; they have shown that the spillover from workplace to family and from family to workplace is com- plex and that the direction of causality is not always clear. Although there is still much to be learned particularly about the long-term impact of dif- ferent types of care on the development of children and on the effect of stress on work performance-several conclusions can be drawn that bear directly on the issues before this panel. We conclude from the evidence reviewed here that women's influx into the labor force, and the attendant changes in the family and the work- place, have had both positive and negative consequences for all concerned. For women, being employed is related to better physical and mental health (although this correlation may be in part because healthier women are more likely to enter the labor force). In general, favorable effects seem most pronounced when women work by choice. Wives are held in higher esteem by their families, and other family members benefit from the additional income. The effect on the well-being of children depends largely on the care they receive, in or out of the home. Among the negative effects of women's growing labor force participation is that men as well as women increasingly find that work and family responsibilities impinge on each other. Also, when women work because of economic necessity, their pay is usually low, their jobs are frequently not rewarding, and their work and family schedules often conflict. When they have little control over their schedules, they are particularly likely to be subject to considerable stress. The limited research that has been done suggests that family responsi- bilities are likely to increase labor force turnover and may have some nega- tive effects on work performance. There is, for instance, evidence of rela- tionships to absenteeism and tardiness, geographic mobility, and disruptions at work. Although problems appear to be somewhat different depending on
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LINKAGES BETWEEN WORK AND FAMILY 63 occupation, they are not confined to any one group. Much more informa- tion is needed on both the positive and the negative effects of dual work and family roles for low-income couples, single parents, and members of racial and ethnic minority groups. It is evident that managers, supervisors, and peers play a large part in facilitating or inhibiting the adjustment of work- ers to their dual responsibilities. Most significantly, permitting employees some choice and some control tends to reduce the negative consequences of combining work and family responsibilities.
Representative terms from entire chapter: