Caution! Men Not at Work: Gender-Specific Labor Market Conditions and Child Maltreatment
This paper examines the effect of labor market conditions—measured through unemployment, mass layoffs and predicted employment—on child abuse and neglect using county-level data from California. Using these indicators we separately estimate the effects of overall and gender-specific economic shocks. We find only modest evidence of a link between overall economic conditions and child maltreatment. However, analysis by gender reveals robust evidence that maltreatment decreases with indicators for male employment and increases with indicators for female employment. These opposite-signed effects are consistent with a theoretical framework that builds on family-time-use models and is supported by analysis of time-use data.
This paper was revised on October 6, 2016
Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w18994
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