The number of mums in work while their children were aged five
and under, increased over a six-year period, new research has
The Growing Up in Scotland national study surveyed two groups of
mothers who had children in 2004/05 and in 2010/11, with research
conducted when children were 10 months, three years and five years
old. More than 11,000 mothers were interviewed at least once as
part of this study.
The report's findings include:
- Overall 53% of mothers with children born in 2010/11 were in
work at all child age points covered by the survey - which is
equivalent to more than 30,000 mums in work. This compared to
48% of mothers with a child born in 2004/05
- Mothers looking for work were more likely to be younger, single
parents and to live in lower income households
- The proportion of mums of five-year-olds in paid work in 2015
was 70%, up from 65% six years earlier - an increase equivalent to
nearly 3,000 more mothers in work.
Minister for Employability and Training Jamie Hepburn said:
"This study shows that over a six year period the number of mums
returning to work after having a child increased.
"Clearly there is still more that we can do to ensure no-one is
forced to choose between their career or their family
responsibilities, and that those looking for work can find
"That is why we have committed to implementing pilot schemes to
reduce the burden of upfront childcare costs and we will almost
double free early learning and childcare.
"Our pregnancy and maternity discrimination working group will
continue to look at how we can remove any barriers to work, promote
the benefits of flexible working and provide information on
employment rights to pregnant workers."
Nikki Slowey, job share programme director, Family Friendly
Working Scotland said:
"While the GUS research indicates overall maternal employment
rates in Scotland are improving, it also highlights that
significant barriers still exist for mothers - primarily a lack of
flexible jobs and issues around arranging suitable childcare.
"Flexibility at work is a key part of the solution. Greater
flexibility, such as reduced or adjusted working hours, job share
or working from home, would be hugely beneficial not only for
mothers but also fathers and indeed anyone seeking to address a
good work life balance.
"The more we can normalise and mainstream flexibility the more
mothers we will see entering the labour market and progressing in
Source - Scottish Government Website