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One parent with children

The number of 'one parent with children' families has increased 4.2 percent since the 2006 Census. At the time of the 2013 Census, there were 201,804 one parent with children families, up from 193,635 in 2006.

Fewer children in one-parent families than couple-with-children families

'One parent with children' families tended to include fewer children than 'couple with children' families did. Over half (56.1 percent) of one-parent families included one child, compared with 38.1 percent for couples with children. One-parent families with two children were less common (28.7 percent) than couples with two children (40.2 percent).

Graph, Family type by number of children in family, for families with children, 2013 Census.

Most one-parent families include one or two dependent children

Of one-parent families, 144,408 (71.6 percent) included at least one dependent child. This was down from 74.9 percent in 2006.

Most one-parent families included either one (38.0 percent) or two (21.7 percent) dependent children. One-parent families including three dependent children were less common, at 7.5 percent. A small proportion (3.6 percent) had four or more dependent children. Over one-quarter (27.8 percent) of one-parent families did not have any dependent children.

Higher percentage of older children in one-parent families than couple with children families

In around 6 in 10 one-parent families, the youngest child was aged under 15 years. Of the one-parent families, 24.3 percent had a youngest child aged 0–4 years, 18.9 percent aged 5–9 years and 18.8 percent aged 10–14 years.

In 11.9 percent of one-parent families, the youngest child was aged 30 years or over, compared with 4.0 percent for couple with children families. The age of the youngest child helps to show the variety of families in New Zealand, including situations where older parents and adult children live together.

Most parents in 'one parent with dependent children' families are women

In 2013, most parents in families of one parent with dependent children were women, at 84.2 percent. This was up from 83.4 percent in 2006.

Half of all parents in 'one parent with dependent children' families are aged 35–49 years

Half of all parents in families of one parent with dependent children were aged 35–49 years. Nearly one-quarter were aged 25–34 years, and 9.5 percent were aged 20–24 years. Just 1.7 percent, or 2,466 parents, in these families were aged under 20 years.

Graph, Age group of parents in one parent with dependent children families, 2013 Census.

One-third of parents in one-parent families with dependent children are employed full-time

The percentage of full-time employed parents in 'one parent with dependent children' families was very similar between 2013 (35.5 percent) and 2006 (35.6 percent). It increased from 30.3 percent in 2001. The percentage of these parents who were employed part-time decreased: 17.4 percent were employed part-time in 2013, down from 18.5 percent in 2006, and 19.1 percent in 2001.

In 2013, of male parents in one-parent families with dependent children:

  • 56.4 percent were employed full-time – down from 59.3 percent in 2006
  • 7.7 percent were employed part-time – down slightly from 8.0 percent in 2006.

Of female parents in one-parent families with dependent children:

  • 31.8 percent were employed full-time – up slightly from 31.0 percent in 2006
  • 19.1 percent were employed part-time – down from 20.6 percent in 2006.

Unemployment increased for parents in one-parent families with dependent children: 13.5 percent were unemployed in 2013, up from 8.0 percent in 2006. The percentage of these parents not in the labour force was 33.6 percent in 2013, down from 37.8 percent in 2006.

 
Graph, Work and labour force status of parents in one parent with dependent children families.

 

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