Spending time with children ‘more important than the mortgage’

NZ Herald November 01, 2007
A controversial new report says parents should forget about buying a house if necessary so they can afford time with their children. The report, from the conservative Maxim Institute, says fathers, and mothers, can improve their children’s behaviour, learning and happiness – but only if they put in the hours in active involvement. The institute’s policy and research manager, Alex Penk, says the New Zealand economy has been geared around families working some of the longest hours in the developed world, and needs to be regeared to let parents spend time with their children.”For some families, placing fathering as a priority means a change in expectations of lifestyle such as renting rather than owning a home,” he said. “But for other families it’s even harder than that. The tax rates are such that low-income families subsidise childcare for the middle classes and the price of goods has adjusted upwards as families have higher incomes due to working longer hours and having two incomes.”…The report, written by father of two Daniel Lees, 31, found that 21 out of 24 studies internationally found that fathers’ active involvement with their children made a measurable difference to their children’s behaviour, psychological wellbeing, self-esteem, school attitudes and achievement and overall life satisfaction.

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10473357

Family First Media Release –

Father Report is Reality Check for Government Policy