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12 June 2003

Alan Milburn, Secretary of State for Health, has quit the cabinet saying the demands of the job conflicted with having a young family in the North East.

Alan Milburn, who is a father of two young boys, has decided to leave his job as Secretary of State for Health today, 12 June saying that he has ‘found it increasingly difficult to balance having a young family in the north east with the demands of being a cabinet minister’.

Responding to the news, The Work Foundation says: "In a wider context, this decision is very interesting for the work-life debate. The Work Foundation’s recent research, Dad’s Army has argued that many men are increasingly feeling the pressure of juggling paid work and other commitments and want to spend more time with their families. This high profile resignation highlights further that more and more men want to be able to be fulfilled inside and outside paid work. We need to start thinking about how we can change the way we work to accommodate higher productivity and employee satisfaction, rather than losing talented people because their different aspirations cannot be fulfilled."


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