How can child assistance policy supporting familisation be supported?

Sulikah Asmorowati, Tauchid Komara Yuda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: This study examines the public’s perception of cash transfers for children in societies where children's welfare is often viewed as a private affair. Design/methodology/approach: Based on 12 semi-structured interviews and Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) conducted in urban Jakarta, Indonesia, we explore mothers' perspectives on cash transfer programmes for children within low-income families during fieldwork in October 2023 and January 2024. In addition to the semi-structured interview, a FGD involving parents and other related stakeholders was conducted to increase data accuracy. Findings: Our findings reveal that cash transfers function as a “caregiving allowance” in Jakarta, allowing mothers to prioritize familial obligations while maintaining a reasonable standard of living. Contrary to the “de-familisation” focus observed in advanced welfare countries, these cash transfers for children reinforce traditional family labour division (familisation). Interestingly, despite reinforcing the familisation function, the initiative receives significant support. These results clearly highlight the influence of familisation-oriented welfare production, demonstrating a focus on enhancing family resilience in the design of child-related policies in Indonesia. Overall, these results make clear the visibility of traditional division of labour influences on welfare production, revealing a focus on the familialisation effect in the design of child-related policies in Indonesia. These findings reinforce the suitability of the term “familistic welfare regime” as an appropriate descriptor for Jakarta in particular and Indonesia in general. Originality/value: This study enriches our understanding of the evolution of child-related assistance in the Global South through a defamilisation lens, shedding light on the complex interplay between gender inequalities and social policy formulation in these regions. Furthermore, it offers valuable insights into the ongoing discourse on welfare regime studies in Indonesia, suggesting that mainstream narratives of productivist transition are only partially validated. The insights garnered from this research open avenues for future studies across diverse contexts.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Sociology and Social Policy
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2024

Keywords

  • Cash transfer
  • Children well-being
  • Defamilisation
  • Public support
  • Social policy

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