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ATTN: Mr Maharey - family form matters

Maxim Institute Media release

20 November 2003

ATTN: Mr Maharey - family form matters

Yesterday Social Development Minister, Mr Maharey said, "I know of no social science that says a nuclear family is more successful than other kinds."

It appears that the Minister is either unfamiliar or is ignoring a large body of evidence that shows the best family environment for children is with their two natural parents.

We draw his attention to the work of David Popenoe of Rutgers University (USA), who has probably done more research on family and marriage than anyone else in the world. In a New York Times feature article called the "Controversial Truth", Prof. Popenoe said:

"Social science research is almost never conclusive. There are always methodological difficulties and stones left unturned. Yet in three decades of work as a social scientist, I know of few other bodies of data in which the weight of evidence is so decisively on one side of the issue: on the whole, for children, two-parent families are preferable...If our prevailing views on family structure hinged solely on scholarly evidence, the current debate would never have arisen in the first place." New York Times, 26 December 1992, (p. A21)

Mr Maharey should objectively examine the evidence and diversify his reading before promoting all forms of family as being equal in outcomes.

If the government is genuinely interested in the best interests of children then it should support the family form proven to be most successful.

Ends.

ENDS

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