Chapter

Family leave and employment in the EU: transition of working mothers in and out of employment

Anita Haataja

in Care and social integration in European societies

Published by Policy Press

Published in print September 2005 | ISBN: 9781861346049
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447301592 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781861346049.003.0013
Family leave and employment in the EU: transition of working mothers in and out of employment

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This chapter discusses the problems of producing and presenting the employment status of those parents who take advantage of any kind of statutory family leave. It also describes the way in which definitions of employment, unemployment and opting out of employment have been criticised from the gender perspective. The current definitions of how people on family leave are supposed to be classified in labour force statistics, and what practical problems there are in different countries, are explained. Moreover, the chapter shows the similarities and differences in present leave schemes and that classifications between activity or inactivity vary across the European Union member states. The conclusion drawn from the problems presented is that more ‘visible’ take-up rates of different kinds of family leave would give more accurate information of the labour market situation of mothers and fathers than the currently available statistics.

Keywords: family leave; employment; working mothers; European Union; labour market; unemployment

Chapter.  8663 words.  Illustrated.

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