Unsociable Work? Nonstandard Work Schedules, Family Relationships, and Children’s Well-Being


National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health, The Australian National University, Canberra, ACT, Australia 0200 (lyndall.strazdins@anu.edu.au).


Many children live in families where one or both parents work evenings, nights, or weekends. Do these work schedules affect family relationships or well-being? Using cross-sectional survey data from dual-earner Canadian families (N= 4,306) with children aged 2 – 11 years (N= 6,156), we compared families where parents worked standard weekday times with those where parents worked nonstandard schedules. Parents working nonstandard schedules reported worse family functioning, more depressive symptoms, and less effective parenting. Their children were also more likely to have social and emotional difficulties, and these associations were partially mediated through family relationships and parent well-being. For some families, work in the 24-hour economy may strain the well-being of parents and children.