The Effect of Paid Parental Leave on Child Health in Australia

37 Pages Posted: 9 Apr 2015

See all articles by Barbara Broadway

Barbara Broadway

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute: Applied Economic & Social Research; ARC Centre of Excellence for Children and Families over the Life Course

Guyonne R.J. Kalb

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute: Applied Economic & Social Research; ARC Centre of Excellence for Children and Families over the Life Course; IZA

Daniel Kuehnle

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg-Friedrich Alexander Universität Erlangen Nürnberg

Miriam Maeder

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg-Friedrich Alexander Universität Erlangen Nürnberg

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: April 8, 2015

Abstract

Providing mothers with access to paid parental leave may be an important public policy to improve child and maternal health. Using extensive information from the Australian Longitudinal Study of Children (LSAC), we contribute to the literature by estimating the effect of paid parental leave entitlements on child health up to age seven. Exploiting detailed information on children’s health, family background, mothers’ pre-birth work histories and mothers’ health behaviours during pregnancy within a propensity score matching framework, we show that paid parental leave entitlements reduce the probability of a child having multiple ongoing health conditions, but do not significantly affect any single condition. We find that the effect on multiple conditions is strongest for children from lower socioeconomic backgrounds. Our study implies that the provision of paid parental leave, even for short periods (as usually available in Australia), will benefit children’s health.

Keywords: Child health, parental leave, Australia, LSAC

JEL Classification: I1

Suggested Citation

Broadway, Barbara and Kalb, Guyonne R.J. and Kuehnle, Daniel and Maeder, Miriam, The Effect of Paid Parental Leave on Child Health in Australia (April 8, 2015). Melbourne Institute Working Paper No. 9/15, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2591719 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2591719

Barbara Broadway (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute: Applied Economic & Social Research ( email )

Level 5, FBE Building, 111 Barry Street
Parkville, Victoria 3010
Australia

HOME PAGE: http://www.melbourneinstitute.com/

ARC Centre of Excellence for Children and Families over the Life Course ( email )

Guyonne R.J. Kalb

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute: Applied Economic & Social Research ( email )

Level 5, FBE Building, 111 Barry Street
Parkville, Victoria 3010
Australia

ARC Centre of Excellence for Children and Families over the Life Course ( email )

185 Pelham Street
Carlton, 3053
Australia

IZA ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Daniel Kuehnle

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg-Friedrich Alexander Universität Erlangen Nürnberg ( email )

Lehrstuhl f. Statistik und emp. Wirtschaftsforschu
Lange Gasse 20
Nürnberg, 90403
Germany
+49-911-5302-256 (Phone)

Miriam Maeder

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg-Friedrich Alexander Universität Erlangen Nürnberg ( email )

Schloßplatz 4
DE Bavaria 91054
Germany

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