Disability and caring among families with children: Family employment and poverty characteristics

This report uses data from the Families and Children Study to investigate the characteristics of families that include a disabled adult and/or child. Questions posed by this research include, for instance, how do disability and caring responsibilities relate to families' ages, size, ethnic origins and so on? How far does disability cluster together within families, given that worklessness appears often related to ill-health?

Having analysed the characteristics of different families, what is the effect of these different elements on employment? Some families appear to remain in paid employment despite having, say, caring responsibilities, whereas other families do not find it possible to combine work with caring - an area sometimes known as 'resilience'. What can we learn from the experiences of the former group?

Stephen McKay
Adele Atkinson
Department for Work and Pensions