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Life is better when parents stay married!

APRIL 2006

Life is better when parents stay married!

A stable family life leads to better education, higher household wealth and often a better chance of children growing up to have a happy relationship.

The Sydney Morning Herald (April 12, 2006) has reported on a survey of the same 20,000 people each year conducted by the University of Melbourne's Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research on behalf of the Federal Government.

It says "As divorce becomes more prevalent, young people are more likely to have their education disrupted by family problems and experience difficulty finding a partner they are happy with."

"Men who grew up in families that did not break up were found to be living in households worth 78 per cent more than men brought up by only one parent."

"For women the difference was even more striking - women brought up by both parents were found to be living in households where the worth was double that of those lived in by women brought up by only one parent."

"It speculated that family arrangements of people while they were growing up were unlikely to affect their future life satisfaction."

"But women's relationships were more likely to be affected than men's. "Women whose parents were not together when they were 14 had lower levels of satisfaction with their own current relationships than women whose parents had stayed together," the authors found."

"Education levels were also likely to be higher for both men and women who grew up with both parents. About 20 per cent obtained degrees, a far higher rate than people who grew up in other households. The same was true at the other end of the education spectrum, with far more people reaching only year 11 having grown up in families where the parents' relationships had ended," the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

"This research does not highlight anything new that other international research hasn't already ," says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of the Family First Lobby. "The commitment of marriage, and the presence of both mum and dad, are vitally important for our New Zealand children. Solo parents must be supported by society as they have double the job of a 2-parent household, but we should never deny the fact that the very best environment to raise a child is in a 2-parent household where both the mum and dad are there."

"This research simply reinforces the fact that marriage matters, and government policy should acknowledge this."

The full report in the Sydney Morning Herald can be viewed here:
http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/have-a-life--keep-the-folks-wed/2006/0 4/ 11/1144521339068.html


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