Back-to-work aid urged for all mums
5:00AM Tuesday June 17, 2008

Women wanting to return to the workforce after having children should receive the same Government training and childcare help as single mothers, a Massey University researcher says.

In a study on mothers returning to work, university management department researcher Dr Ee Kheng Ang found that they typically took lower-status jobs and lower pay than before having children.

Mothers who stalled their careers by taking a break to raise children generally faced "downward occupational mobility" and loss of lifetime incomes, she found.

They could then find it very difficult to progress in their careers, particularly from casual or part-time work.

Dr Ang said there was a widely held assumption that mothers going back to work had outdated skills and qualifications and that their performance would be constrained by motherhood.

"The returners are often highly skilled and qualified individuals, but employers appear to treat them as relatively unskilled labour suitable for casual employment," she said.

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