Cook, K. & Noblet, A. (2012). Job satisfaction and 'welfare-to-work': Is any job a good job for Australian single mothers?. Australian Journal of Social Issues,47(2), 203-219. Australia: Australian Council of Social Service.
This exploratory study sought to assess the job satisfaction of employed Australian single mothers who had mandatory employment participation requirements. In particular, we sought to identify the characteristics of the job and the individual that were closely associated with participant's job satisfaction. Self‑report data on job satisfaction, employment characteristics and parenting stress were collected from 155 employed single mothers. Participant job satisfaction was compared to female Australian population norms and linear regression analyses determined the job‑related and individual predictors of single mothers' job satisfaction. Findings from this exploratory study revealed that single mothers involved in a mandatory welfare‑to‑work program experienced significantly lower job satisfaction than the Australian female population. The individual variable, parental distress, negatively predicted each of the six job satisfaction domains while being employed on a casual basis was inversely associated with three domains (job security, work hours and overall job satisfaction). The Australian government purported that making the transition from welfare to work would improve wellbeing for program participants, under the assumption that 'any job's a good job'. However, the relatively low levels of job satisfaction experienced by single mothers in the current study provide little support for this assumption.
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