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Family policy mattersResponding to family change in Europe$
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Linda Hantrais

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9781861344717

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781861344717.001.0001

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Changing welfare needs

Changing welfare needs

(p.105) Five Changing welfare needs
Family policy matters

Linda Hantrais

Policy Press

Growing concern about impending labour and skills shortages, in conjunction with welfare entrenchment, was stimulating the development of schemes to shift the recipients of welfare off benefits and into work through more active employment policies. Coming at the same time as renewed emphasis on equality of opportunity, incentives to encourage women to become economically active were sharpening questions about how to deal with the care needs of younger and older dependants when women were no longer available as primary carers. This chapter explores the relative importance of family-related issues in the legislative process by tracking the development of national law and practice with regard to marital status and intra-familial obligations and duties. It compares the ways in which families as units and their members as individual citizens are conceptualised by public administration. Finally, the chapter considers the extent to which state and family share responsibility for the welfare of dependants in different cultural environments, and looks at how the interactive process between them is being reconfigured in response to socio-economic change.

Keywords:   welfare, family, women, legislation, obligation, citizen, socio-economic change

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