A family policy agenda to enhance families' transactional interdependencies over the life span

Shirley L. Zimmerman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Taking a broad rather than a narrow approach to family policy, this paper identifies three trends that call for responses that could become a part of a family policy agenda in the future: growing wage and income disparities among American families, the increased labor force participation of mothers with young children, and increased life expectancy. The latter is discussed within the context of Social Security reform and the need for opportunity structures to accommodate changing demographic realities. In that vein, it also addresses labor force participation of mothers with young children, within the context of the need for a family care system to accommodate parents' expanded roles in the face of societal expectations. An agenda created around each of these three interrelated trends could help to ensure the viability of families as social systems and their ability to perform their functions over the life span, bringing into better balance transactional interdependencies within families, and between families and the systems in their environment with which they interact. Implications for family policy advocates, educators, and researchers are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)557-566
Number of pages10
JournalFamilies in Society
Volume81
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

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