Following families: working lone-mother families and their children

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Analysis of poverty dynamics based on large-scale survey data shows that there is limited mobility across the income distribution for most individuals and families. This includes lone parents, who are one of the groups most likely to stay poor over time. This high income poverty risk is reduced for those lone parents who are in employment and who receive state financial support through tax credits to supplement their wages. But income security in work can be difficult to achieve. This article reports on longitudinal qualitative research which has involved repeat interviews with lone mothers and their children over a period of three to four years. The analysis explores the experiences of sustaining employment while living on a low, but complex, income and highlights the challenges faced in seeking financial security in this context.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-97
Number of pages14
JournalSocial Policy and Administration
Issue number1
Early online date19 Jan 2011
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011


  • Childhood and youth
  • Poverty, work and justice


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