DADS IN THE UK DO NOT HAVE EQUAL RIGHTS TO MUMS:
- Unmarried fathers do not have the same automatic legal right as mothers to be involved in their children’s upbringing and share in decisions about their children’s health, education, religion etc.
- Separated fathers living with their children less than 4 days a week do not have no access to state benefits and tax credits to themselves and their children (eg child benefit, housing benefit, family tax credits) – this can cause hardship for both fathers and their children
- All new fathers – including the growing number of stay-at-home dads, have fewer parental leave rights than all new mothers
- Nine out of 10 fathers who don’t take paternity leave would like to take it according to YouGov
- 7 out of 10 fathers and 8 out of 10 separated fathers would like more contact with their children’s schools
- Two thirds of separated fathers see their children less than once a week and a third (half a million) have no contact with their children
There is also a wealth of research showing that father involvement early in children’s lives leads to better school attendance, better exam results, better behaviour, higher educational expectations and better social and emotional outcomes for children. In particular, where fathers from disadvantaged backgrounds are involved in their children’s education and learning, children are more likely to escape from poverty later in life.
Boys who are fatherless are more likely to be excluded from school, commit crime or end up in prison. In Brighton, around 70% of boys growing up in out of work households are living apart from them father.