Australian children believe their fathers work ‘too much’


One third of Australian children aged between 11 and 13 believe their fathers work too much, according to the results of a study.

The study by the Australian National University (ANU), undertaken as part of a wider project called “Growing Up in Australia”, took accounts from 3,000 fathers and their children, and discovered that nearly half of all fathers worked more than 44 hours a week, Xinhua news agency reported.

The study’s lead researcher, professor Lyndall Strazdins, said those long hours, as well as “regular” night and weekend work, contributed to their children’s perceptions that fathers were working too much.

“Australia’s work culture and social norms are making it hard for dads to be the fathers they want to be,” Strazdins said.

The study also showed that, on average, Australian fathers spent more time at paid work than mothers, who still undertake more domestic and home duties than fathers. Strazdins said longer work hours were also a contributor to health risks among dads in Australia.

“Our research has shown that people who work more than 39 hours per week are putting their health at risk, and we have also shown that expectations to work long hours are a problem for gender equality,” she said.

Despite children wishing their fathers worked fewer hours per week, most understood that their dad “needs to work”.