Publish date31 Dec 2011 - 10:38
Story Code : 77346

One-parent families booming in Britain

Britain is home to more one-parent families than any other major European country with one in five children living with a single mother or father, a new study has revealed.
One-parent families booming in Britain
The results of the study by Luxembourg-based Eurostat show that the decline of marriage has condemned millions of youngsters to living with a single parent in the UK.

According to the study, these children are more likely than others to suffer poor health, do badly at school, and go on to less successful adult lives.

The study showed that 20.8 percent of children in the UK were living in single parent families in 2008.

In just three countries were children more likely to live with one parent: Estonia and Latvia in Eastern Europe, and Ireland, where the number was 23.2 percent, according to the results.

The proportion of children in single-parent families in the UK is roughly ۵۰ percent higher than in France and 35 percent higher than in Germany.

The figures, produced by the EU's statistical arm, come at a time of increased efforts to downplay the importance of marriage by politicians and campaigners who oppose tax breaks for married couples.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has declared that “strong relationships between parents are important” but the state should not use the tax system to favor a particular family set-up.

“You can look at these figures and see immediately which countries help couples through tax and benefits”, said Researcher and author Patricia Morgan.

“In France, people get help if they draw up legal family contracts. In Germany, Holland and Italy, married people get tax relief and tax relief for children. Even in Sweden, where they do nothing for married couples, they do not help single parents, and they expect them to work”, Morgan added.
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