Chapter

A Finer Future?

Pat Thane and Tanya Evans

in Sinners? Scroungers? Saints?

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199578504
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741838 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199578504.003.0008
A Finer Future?

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The first thorough account of the work of the Finer Committee on One-Parent Families, set up by the Labour Government in 1969, reported in 1974. The most detailed study, then or since, of the past and present of single parenthood in Britain, its causes and outcomes. Examines the membership, the evidence, conclusions, and recommendations: the difficulties of mothers in being self-supporting, given gender inequalities in pay and work opportunities and inadequate childcare; of fathers, especially when low-paid and with two families; the inadequacies of the legal system and the benefit system; lack of suitable housing and continuing forbidding conditions in Homes. They recommended a new state benefit for lone-parent families, which the Labour Government rejected, though child support was improved. It led to lasting improvement in the legal system. From 1977 improved access to council housing for lone mothers.

Keywords: unmarried mothers; illegitimacy; family history; welfare history; fathers; housing; child benefit; lone-parent benefit; Mother and Baby Homes

Chapter.  14257 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social and Cultural History

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