Chapter 2: The tensions embedded within parents' access to and the administration of child support: A cross-country conceptual framework
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This edited collection uniquely captures data from a diversity of countries, governed by neoliberal welfare-states, familial and religious social structures, and social democracies. In the overwhelming majority of cases, child support payments are by a non-resident father to a resident mother, reflecting the deeply gendered distribution of work and care that exists in most countries. Across countries in this collection, single mothers endure limited opportunities for affordable childcare and adequate employment, with little help from the state. The conceptual framework presented in this chapter builds on Nieuwenhuis and Maldonado’s ‘triple bind’ of single parenthood by highlighting the gendered nature of single parenthood. It provides a framework through which to assess child support’s role in arbitrating between such issues as private and state responsibility for children’s welfare, and between the negation of gender differences versus a commitment to gender justice.

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