More support needed for teen dads, charities warn

Topic Selected: Families and Parenting

General Article icon Type: General Article

We need to stop treating fathers like optional extras and help teen dads play a bigger part in their children’s lives, leading family charities have said today.

Are we nearly there yet, Dad? (1), a report by the Family Strategic Partnership (2), warns that a culture shift is needed in ‘mother-centred’ family services which often treat dads as invisible. Currently services across the board, from pregnancy care to housing support, are driving fathers apart from their children through a ‘culture where fathers are not valued’.

Issues include:

  • a failure by maternity services and children’s centres to even ask about fathers (3),
  • local authority housing benefit rules that prevent dads from accommodating their children (4),
  • a widespread lack of basic local authority data on the numbers and profile of teen fathers (5).

The report, which has been funded by the Department for Education, cal

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