Research shows that work is undervalued by stay-at-home parents

MOST people underestimate the value of stay-at-home parents.

A survey commissioned by insurance company Royal London also found that eight in ten people feel that work done by parents at home is not adequately supported.

Nine out of ten survey participants estimate the work of housewives and husbands at 28,000 euros.

But Royal London’s actuaries estimate it would cost €53,000 a year to hire someone to do a parent’s job around the house.

Royal London said this meant people were underestimating the contribution to parents’ households in monetary terms.

According to a study by the Central Statistics Office, nearly 350,000 people work as stay-at-home parents, mostly women.

However, the number of stay-at-home fathers more than doubled in the 10 years from 2009 to 2019, rising from 7,000 to 19,900, the CSO reported.

The chores the parents do weekly include cooking, cleaning, driving the kids to their various activities, among others.

The life insurance company said the work of parents is invaluable to their families and irreplaceable to the community.

However, according to iReach’s survey of 1,000 people, more than eight in ten people agree that the role of the stay-at-home parent is either underappreciated or undervalued by Irish society.

Around 39 per cent of people say that Irish society does not value the role of housewife enough.

Royal London Ireland’s calculations, based on real wage data, show that the cost of hiring someone to take on the chores of stay-at-home mums and dads would be an estimated €53,480 per year.

Despite this, survey participants estimated the potential “salary” of the stay-at-home parent to average €28,460 per year.

Karen Gallagher, Chief Executive of Royal London Ireland, said: “While the role of stay-at-home parents could be described as ‘priceless’, it is interesting to use our annual survey to gauge public perceptions of its value.

“It seems people continue to underestimate the role.”

The survey found that more women than men believe the role of the stay-at-home parent is either underestimated or unsupported by society.

Only 18 per cent of people believe that the role of housewife is valued in Irish society.

Ms Gallagher said: “It is understandable that without the calculations, many people might not be able to accurately estimate what the cost of replacing the stay-at-home parent would be. What is surprising is how much they underestimate it.” Research shows that work is undervalued by stay-at-home parents

Fry Electronics Team

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