The study, by Dr Heejung Chung at the University of Kent, focuses on women with care responsibilities who have the most demand for family friendly-friendly policies. The two types of non-statutory family-friendly arrangements considered were flexitime and taking time off during working hours for personal reasons.
Low-skilled workers and those who perceived that their jobs were more insecure were less likely to feel that they had access to non-statutory flexible working arrangements. This was because, unlike statutory arrangements, the provision of flexible arrangements can be used by employers to reward or incentivise their permanent workers.
She also found that there was a large variation across countries in the extent to which female carers have access to family-friendly arrangements, with greater access in northern European countries and less in many eastern and southern European nations.
However, the research found that it is in these northern European nations with the best family-friendly working-time arrangements that the division in access between secure and skilled (insiders) workers and the insecure and unskilled (outsiders) is the greatest.
The study, entitled Dualization and the access to occupational family‐friendly working‐time arrangements across Europe, is published in the journal Social Policy & Administration.