The role of parental work schedule in CPS involvement

Wen Jui Han, Chien Chung Huang, Margaret Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Using data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study (N = 2904), we investigated whether maternal work schedules were associated with Child Protective Services (CPS) involvement and child maltreatment indicators during the first five years of a child's life. We further examined if this association could be explained by demographic characteristics, child care arrangements, maternal health and social supports, economic and hardship characteristics, and parenting practices. Finally, we examined if this association differed by context (i.e., maternal marital status, maternal education, and family income-to-needs ratio). Our regression results indicate significant associations between maternal shift work and mother-reported CPS involvement and mother-reported psychological aggression behaviors. Economic and hardship characteristics explained some of the significant association between maternal shift work and CPS involvement. Economic and hardship characteristics and parenting practices also explained some of the significant association between maternal shift work and psychological aggression behaviors. The obtained significant associations were more pronounced for mothers who were not married, who were high school graduates, and whose family income was either below or near poverty. We discuss the broader social factors associated with employment demands and childcare arrangements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)837-847
Number of pages11
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2013


  • CPS involvement
  • Child neglect
  • FFCW
  • Nonstandard work schedules
  • Shift work

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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