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Poverty, its relation to Divorce and the effects on Canadian Children - Essay Example

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Poverty, its Relation to Divorce and the effects on Canadian Children. Poverty and divorce most certainly have an effect on the well-being of Canadian children. Long term poverty is defined as the extent to which a child has lived in a family whose income is below that of Canada’s low income cut-off…
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Poverty, its relation to Divorce and the effects on Canadian Children
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Download file to see previous pages These circumstances are reflected in their behaviors that are displayed at a later age. There are multiple reasons for these effects. Divorce and poverty may also affect the styles of parenting that children are exposed to. Parenting style ultimately plays a significant role in how children relate to themselves, their families and to others. Children from divorced families and families that live in poverty do show a lower level of physical health and wellness, a higher level of hyperactivity as well as a lower performance standard in their academic standing. Several factors contribute to family poverty. These factors may include a lack of employment, lower rate of pay or inadequate income necessary to support dependant family members and possibly insufficient government support from Canadian social assistance and welfare programs. Regardless of the causes of family poverty, a “Family Stress Model” explained in a study by (Conger et al. 2000) has concluded that the presence of a poverty situation in a family is one of the more critical factors that can place stress upon a relationship between two spouses. The strain experienced between spousal partners may bring about feelings of depression and create an environment which is more likely to be dysfunctional for all family members to live in. The risk of divorce is therefore elevated. Marriage breakdown affects women and children at a significantly greater negative level than it does men in terms of economic and emotional consequences. According to the government of Canada statistics, “a women’s family income drops by roughly one-half, and men’s declines about one quarter in the first year of divorce, while using income to needs ratios to adjust for family size indicates a smallish rise in economic well-being for men, versus drops of just over 40% per women”. The responsibilities of caring for children -and this includes enrollment in daycares- may push women below the poverty line. Statistics Canada reports that “single parent families make up 10% of Canadian families, but account for 46% of the children who are living in poverty. The courts awarding of insufficient amounts of spousal and child support have also been identified as significant contributors to poverty in single female parent families. Whether the result of the dysfunction actually does or does not lead to divorce will have an effect on the children who witness the dysfunction. The parents may choose to remain in a single union, and the family stress model predicts that the entire family will be more likely to stay in a state of depression and dysfunction. On the other hand, if the family dissolves through the event of divorce, usually a higher level of stress will be experienced by all members of the family. Also, if the family dissolves it is more likely that the children will remain under the care of the mother and she is more likely to have a lower income in relation to the needs of the children (Finnie 1993; Dooley et al.1995). In the event that single parents choose to marry again, this will decrease the chances of entering a state of poverty but will also increase the chances of having other complicating matters in regards to the management of parent and child relationships within step families (Daly and Wilson 1998). Poverty automatically places all children at a disadvantage. If a child is not able to be properly cared for in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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