Mothers and Fathers in the House

This isn’t by us, but some new research, by Rosie Campbell and Sarah Childs, has looked at the extent to which MPs are parents.  These data have not been collected before, and they show large differences between male and female MPs.

Campbell and Childs show that women are less likely to have children than male MPs; are more likely to have fewer children than male MPs; and women with children enter parliament when their children are older than the children of male MPs.  Or, more precisely:

  • 45% of women MPs have no children, compared to 28% of male MPs.  This compares, they say, to about 20% of the wider population who remain childless.
  • Of MPs with children, male MPs have an average of 1.9 children. For women, the average is 1.2.
  • The average age of women MPs’ eldest child, when they first entered parliament, was 16.  For men, the equivalent figure was 12.