Where did all the women go?
If today’s labour market statistics are anything to go by, the answer is the dole queue.
The number of unemployed women and women claiming Job Seeker’s Allowance continues to rise to the highest levels in decades. The long predicted impact of public sector job cuts on women’s employment, is now plain to see.
The number of women made redundant increased 72.3% on the previous quarter. A statistic so shocking I did a double take and had to call a colleague to check I hadn’t misread it.
Just in case you missed some of the detail about women in today’s figures, the main points are:
- The number of unemployed women is the highest it’s been since 1988 (1.06m).
- The number of women claiming Job Seeker’s Allowance is at its highest level since 1996.
- Women now make up 33.9% of JSA claimants – the highest proportion since the data series began in 1983.
- The number of women made redundant increased 72.3% on the previous quarter.
- 295,000 women have been unemployed for over 12 months, the highest level since Sep – Nov 1994
- 120,000 women have been unemployed for over 24 months, the highest since 1996.
- 701,000 women in involuntary part-time work are the highest figures since 1992.
- There are 1,347,000 women who are economically inactive who said they wanted jobs, an increase of 49,000 – the largest increase since 1992.
Cameron’s crack team of “blue sky thinkers” who came up with the frankly puzzling recommendations for wooing women voters would do well to think about how they might reverse this tide of mass unemployment.