Gender underemployment gap worse in WA

Figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics last week show women workers in Western Australia continue to be worse off - not just in average weekly earnings, but also in underemployment.

Underemployed workers are employees who would prefer, and are available for, more hours of work than they currently have. 

The latest results from the ABS's Participation, Job Search and Mobility Survey show that one million Australians want more hours of work. Females make up 60 per cent of all underemployed part-time workers.

When you look at the breakdown by state and examine part-time workers who would prefer to work more hours, the gender based disadvantage of the number of weeks they want to work more hours becomes particularly stark.

 

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It can be seen that the 'participation potential' of WA's women workers is not being released, which is one more drag on WA's economic recovery.

According to UnionsWA Secretary Meredith Hammat:

“Part time working women in WA are much more likely than men to be underemployed for longer. 

“This gender underemployment gap is worse in WA than anywhere else in Australia, and is perhaps a reflection of our declining economy.

“In WA the gender pay gap is the worse in Australia.

“The cost is less financial independence, more stress for women and their families, and lower standards of living during working life and retirement".

 Source: ABS 6226.0 - Participation, Job Search and Mobility, Australia, February 2016, Table 4.1.

For more information, please contact Dr Timothy Dymond: tdymond@unionswa.com.au


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