Focus on single-parent households in the Grand Duchy

Etude Statec sur la monoparentalitéSTATEC has produced its first study on single-parent families in the Grand Duchy The study notes firstly a real danger of single-parent households falling into a precarious economic situation, and also that the danger is more acute for women and 'feminised' sectors of the economy more generally. Overall, single-parent families (of which there are about 6,700) represent 3.2% of all households, 9.0% of households with children, and 5.1% of the population. These percentages are slightly lower in the Grand Duchy than in the neighbouring countries.

Single-parent families and poverty

It is known that single-parent households are more likely to be affected by poverty. In 2014, 44.6% of single-parent households had incomes below the poverty level, whereas for all households with dependent children this rate was 'just' 22.4%. It should be noted that the level of poverty among single-parent households in the Grand Duchy is higher than in the neighbouring countries, and higher than the average for the Eurozone (33.8% in 2014).

Single-parent families and women

Single parents are still mainly women. In 2014, the reference person in 82.7% of single-parent households was female. The percentage has fallen slightly since 2009, when the corresponding figure was 89.4%. It will however take a few years before it will be possible to see whether the increase in men as heads of single-parent families is an actual trend.

Since the great majority of persons living alone with dependent children are female, it is logical that they are often to be found working in 'feminised' sectors of the economy, such as shops (13.5% of reference persons in single-parent families compared with 8.3% for all households), hotels and restaurants (7.9% compared with 5.5%), and human health and social action activities (19.8% compared with 13.7%).

Single-parent families and number of children

Most single-parent families have one dependent child (60%, compared with 39.4% of households with two adults and dependent children). The percentage of large families is nevertheless relatively high in single-parent families: 6.5% of these households have four or more children, whereas the corresponding percentage is only 3.3% for households with two adults with dependent children. Logically, single-parent families need more hours of institutional childcare.

Single-parent families and employment

Compared with other types of household, single people with dependent children are more likely to find themselves unemployed or in part-time employment. Whereas only 5.4% of reference persons in households with two adults with dependent children are unemployed, the rate is 9.6% in single-parent families. Full-time employment is the most widespread form of activity (56.8%) in households with two adults with dependent children; the figure is much the same in single-parent households (56.2%).

(Source: STATEC's 'Regards 03/2016' publication)

  • Updated 25-02-2016