That’s the way it should be.. perceptions on intergenerational obligations among migrant and Dutch older persons

Djamila Schans, Utrecht University
Helga de Valk, Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI)

In this paper we study what perceptions migrant and Dutch elderly have regarding the support that should be provided by children. We question how and to what extent these perceptions are determined by socio-demographic or cultural factors. Data from the Netherlands Kinship Panel Study (main and migrant sample, 2002) are used. Analyses focus on those who are aged 50 to 80 years, therewith including 470 Dutch, 70 Turks, 73 Moroccans, 125 Surinamese and 59 Antilleans. Migrant background is found to be an important determinant for perceptions on children’s obligations towards parents. Results show that migrant elderly generally expect more from children regarding weekly visits, providing care, and facilitating co-residence to parents. Additionally, we find that among elderly of all groups the attained level of education has an effect on perceptions of intergenerational obligation. Other socio-demographic characteristics (like marital status, health status, or period of residence in the Netherlands) are not found to be of importance.

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Presented in Session 19: Demographic change and the family