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UK Employment Scales New Heights (But More Could Be Done For Young Women)

24 Jan 2019

UK Employment Scales New Heights (But More Could Be Done For Young Women)

New figures from the Office for National Statistics have revealed that UK employment levels have scaled record new heights.

However, some experts believe that young women are still being left behind in the UK jobs market.

The Office for National Statistics’ latest data, for the three month period between September and November 2018, shows that there are now over 32 and a half million people in employment in the United Kingdom, the highest percentage of the total workforce that has ever been recorded.

Meanwhile, the number of full and part time job vacancies on offer also rose by 10,000 to a current peak of more than 850,000.

Wages are also on the up, with the latest annualised figures showing average weekly earnings outstripping inflation to rise by 3.4 per cent.

Taking some of the credit for the recent success, Department for Work and Pensions’ minister, Alok Sharma, said, “Our pro-business policies have helped boost private sector employment by 3.8 million since 2010. And, as the Resolution Foundation’s latest report shows, the jobs boom has helped some of the most disadvantaged groups find employment, providing opportunities across society.”

Also commenting, the head of labour market at the Office for National Statistics, David Freeman, said, “The number of people working grew again, with the share of the population in work now the highest on record. Meanwhile, the share of the workforce looking for work and unable to find it remains at its lowest for over 40 years, helped by a record number of job vacancies.”

On the flip side of the coin, though, the Chief Executive of Young Women’s Trust, Dr Carole Easton OBE, pointed out that the UK jobs market was still skewed in favour of men.

“Today’s record high UK employment figures are welcome news but unemployment among young women has risen by 27,000 since the previous quarter. In total, more than half a million young women are out of work and full-time education.”

“Much more needs to be done to support young women; many of whom tell us they want to work and live independently.”

“Young Women’s Trust is calling on the Government to give young women the right skills and support to find jobs, ensure decent and flexible jobs are available, and extend the National Living Wage to under-25s, so they are paid the same amount for the same work.”

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