FATHERHOOD DURING COVID 19
Adrienne Burgess in her article ‘Why should we care about locked down dads?’ in the Fatherhood Institute’s blog comments that the COVID 19 pandemic has resulted in working fathers return home is overturning the traditional view of fatherhood. She states “this reverse-migration, occasioned by Covid-19 quarantine, offers a unique opportunity (a natural experiment) to explore fathers’/father figures’ circumstances, experiences and aspirations in relation to work and caretaking; and to reflect on relationships with children and gender roles in their families.” (Burgess, 2020) Whilst it is likely that a lot will be written on this issue and the impact of COVID-19 on women and men, it is clear that the way we work in the UK is likely to change, with many choosing to work from home at least in the short-term.
This may cause a change in the involvement of fathers in child-rearing and their interest in the products that support their parenting. This theory seems to be backed by the Government’s Office of National Statistics, that saw in the beginning of lockdown a very large increase in childcare by men (58%) with this being caused by facts such as less travel to work, more working from home and a small drop in men’s overall hours of paid work (11% drop in working hours) (ONS, 2020). Normal working practices have been returning slowly with the easing of lockdowns and COVID restrictions, but Adrienne Burgess is likely to be correct that fathers’ involvement in caring for children is likely to adapt or change for a percentage of the UK’s fathers.
Burgess A (2020). Why should we care about locked down dads? Marlborough: Fatherhood Institute. Available at: http://www.fatherhoodinstitute.org/2020/why-should-we-care-about-locked-down-dads/
ONS (2020). Coronavirus and how people spent their time under lockdown: 28 March to 26 April 2020. London: Office for National Statistics. Available at: https://www.ons.gov.uk
A father who has completed an MBA into the role modern fathers are having in the bringing up of children.