IntroductionThere are 1,250,000 lone-parent families in the UK, and 19 percent of all these families have children(Millar, 1999). The quantity of single parents have almost increased two-fold since early 1970s and this growth is part of widest patterns of change in family structure. Here are so many reasons for this, for example, the rising in extramarital births, the increasing in cohabitation, the rising in the divorce, and the rising of remarriage and cohabitation after divorce. (Millar, 1999). In 2000, it may be that less than 50% of all children in the United Kingdom will have spent all their lives in a traditional two parents family with both their real parents (Kiernan & Wicks, 1990 cited Millar, 1996). The essay will analyse several of the main factors which have affected the changing of the lone mothers families in the UK. And both the troubles and fortunes that received by lone mothers. There are three main parts to explain the changing of lone parents families in Britain: the changing policy; the ascending economy; the changing sociology ( social value).The Three Main Factors—Policy, Economy, and Sociology, for the Increasing of the Lone Mothers Families in the United KingdomSince 1971 to 1990 the number of divorced and seperated female with children increased from 290,000 to 650,000; the quantity of single mother rose from 90,000 to 390,000. The numbers of lone fathers have also raised from 70,000 to 110,000, but they still very much in the small number ,at nearly 10% of all single parents. Hence most lone parents are women and only over 50% are female who are divorced or seperated from their ex-hunsbands (Haskey, 1993 cited Millar, 1996). Nevertheless, the rise in the numbers of single mothers families itself has not significantly increased the concern of the government. In recent three decades, the reason why the quantities of lone parents in the UK has been rising is that their dependence on state benefits has been increasing and the rates of their employment have been decreasing. Poverty has risen and partly single mothers live on incomes probably fewer than the average for other households with children. However, during this time policy for long parents has been ‘in the doldrums’(Bradshaw, 1989 cited Millar, 1996).The Changing PolicyIn the late 1980s, while, the government began to pay more attention to those lone parents families. The social security system as a whole had been reviewed in the middle 1980s and legislation introduced in 1986( Millar,1996). After this review was completed ,according to Millar (1996), policy attention changed, especially to lone parents. In the middle of 1980s the Lancashire Country Council established a welfare rights service which offering expert advice and guidance on the maze of benefits and allowances available to people across the country (Cosslett, Easton & Summerfield,1996). Lone mothers in the UK got tremendous benefits from this service, and various poster and press advertising campaigns have been launched to ensure that mothers are aware of the benefits avialable to them and how to apply for them.Finance is another of the essential reasons. Because the income support for long parents had been increasing rapidly throughout the 1980s and because of this, in real terms social secutrity spending on lone parents increased three times between 1981 and 1988(DSS, 1990 cited Millar,1996). The key economic objective for conservative government in the 1980s was the control of public expenditure. Therefore these increasing cost lead to the concern.One of the Conservative social policy’s central tenets in the 1980s was that the government offered too much support, offering a large number of welfare, and this means that the people and households were not responsible for themselves anymore(Millar,1996). As there was an increasing numbers of lone mothers families who relied on the government to offer them an income. In order to lighten this burden and reduce single parents’ unemployment rate, the policy turned its attention towards another aspect: children support, to solve these problems. Through this way, firstly, it can rise the ‘responsibility’ of the absent father; secondly, it can reduce the ‘dependency’ of the lone mother on the state; thirdly, it can save the state money. So in 1991, there was a Child Support Act. And it aims to deal with thoes lone parents’ children’s issues by establishing an government organisation to be responsible for setting and enforcing maintenance payments for children (Millar,1996). The Children Support Agency really did a big favour to those lone parents, and at the same time it also reflects a particular response to changing employment of female in economy.The Ascending EconomyThe twentiety century has went through a far-reaching change of the nature of work and of the skills of the workforce. Particularly , the economy is controlled by the service industries and work tasks increasingly include work with people rather than on objects. An the same time, with the development of science and technology , an increasing number of works are associated with different kinds of skills. These changes in the forms of work have been accompanied by a dramatic shift in the sex composition of the work force (Halsey & Webb, 2000). Men’s participation rates have consitently decreased through every ten years, from 94% in 1911 to 71% in 1998. On the opposite, there has been a strong trend for women’s participation in the labour force to raise. In 1991, only more than 1/3 of female (35%) were in the workforce; by 1998 this was the case for over half ( 54%) (Halsey & Webb, 2000). From this we can know that the increasing of female cooperation was indicated in the women’s rised share of works. At the same time, it also means that more and more single mothers can support themselves by using their incomes, since they are becoming more independence than before. Hence , it is not uncommon for an increasing number of mothers to chose to support their children by themselves.At the beginning of the 20th century, manufacturing industries had been the main industries, work mainly involved the production of objects. While ,at the end of 20th century the main industries were service industries and work mainly included solving people(Halsey & Webb, 2000). This change was followed by a leading move in the family structure and gender roles.The Canging Sociology (Social Value)With the development of modern culture, people’s notion about family structure becomes more and more open-minded. Several decades ago, the most popular family was the traditional family which includes both natural parents and several children. In this kind of family, the traditional role of the man is the financial provider, and the traditional role of the woman is the housewife (taking care of children and doing the housework). At that time, lone mothers were likely to be a number of negative consequence of this fixation on traditional gender roles(Millar,1996). Because, firstly, the women’s ability to improving their incomes are very limited; secondly, the income of part-time jobs are very low. In other words, this sort of family was reflected inequality between male and female.However ,in contrast, nowadays, there is an increasing number of cohabitating family, divorce family, remarriage family, single parents family, and even homosexual family. Therefore, lone mother family has become a natural part of social families now, and this kind of family is also understand and accepted by the whole society. These days the acceptable role for women includs every kind of jobs, so lone mothers are also have the opportunities to find those high payment jobs. In the modern society, in order to protect women’s right, the feminist organazation WLM even ‘tempted to produce a protection organization which could appeal to all female to adopt its ‘manifesto’ of seven requests. These demands were for (Easton & Summerfield, 1996):1, equal pay;2, equal education and job opportunity;3, free contraception and aboration on demand;4, free 24-hour nurseries, under community control; 5, legal and financial independence;6, an end to discrimination against lesbians;7, freedom from intimidation by the threat or use of violence or sexual coercion, regardless of marital status’.Significantly, feminists have played a essential role in the development of lone mother families. It has helped the lone mother gain a lot of rights, and enhance their social states. But we still need ways to reduce inequalities betweent men and women.英语essay范文（英国essay范例）
ConclusionOverall, with the increasing number of single parents ,that the lone mothers families had become have a significant influence in the British society. It is true that lone parents family brings some challenges for social policy, especially about state financial support for low income single mother families. And the government also need to pay enough attention to single parents family’s children care problems and welfare support. Thanks to the rapid development of 20th century’s economy, because it offers more acceptable jobs and good development opportunities. Then it is not unrealistic that more and more single mothers can find higher salary works and becoming more independence than several decades ago. However, there are still inequalities between men and women, and so many single mothers and their children are still facing some problems, such as poverity, education inequality, violence threaten from the women’s ex-husband( Millar,1996 ). So things are unpredictable. Now what we should do is to find ways to solve those problems, and reduce the unfair between male and female.