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International Journal of Population Research
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 6310683, 12 pages
Research Article

The Impacts of Household Financial Stress, Resilience, Social Support, and Other Adversities on the Psychological Distress of Western Sydney Parents

1Department of Psychology, Macquarie University, Building C3A, Sydney, NSW 2109, Australia
2Humanitarian and Development Research Initiative (HADRI), School of Social Science and Psychology, Western Sydney University, Kingswood Campus, Building P, Locked Bag 1797, Penrith, NSW 2751, Australia
3School of Science and Health, Western Sydney University, Campbelltown Campus, Building 24, Locked Bag 1797, Penrith, NSW 2751, Australia
4Academic Unit of Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine, Australian National University Medical School, Psychological Medicine Unit, Canberra Hospital, Building 4, Yamba Drive, Garran, ACT 2606, Australia

Correspondence should be addressed to Melanie Taylor

Received 17 January 2017; Revised 18 April 2017; Accepted 20 April 2017; Published 22 May 2017

Academic Editor: Sally Guttmacher

Copyright © 2017 Melanie Taylor et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This study investigated the prevalence of psychological distress among parents in Western Sydney households and examined its relationship with household financial, family and life stressors, and potential resilience factors. As part of a longer-term study, parents from Western Sydney, New South Wales (NSW), completed computer-assisted telephone interviews (CATI) in May 2011 (). Respondents were primary caregivers of at least one child (aged 4–16). Responses were weighted to reflect the Western Sydney population. Multivariate analyses were conducted to examine the relationship between parent experiences of stressor and resilience factors and reported psychological distress. Overall, 10.7% (95% CI: 7.8, 14.5) reported experiencing high/very high levels of psychological distress. Multivariate analysis indicated that financial hardship factors formed the strongest associations with psychological distress particularly housing and job security factors and, specifically, inability to meet mortgage/rent payments (, 95% CI: 1.74–15.25, ), poor self-rated health (, 95% CI: 1.88–10.64, ), adult job loss (, 95% CI: 1.33–10.66, ), and other family/life events (, 95% CI: 1.05–5.03, ). High personal resilience was common within this parent population and was a significant protective factor for high psychological distress (, 95% CI: 0.06–0.34, ). The findings support the development of targeted interventions to promote parent coping strategies in the context of household financial hardship.