Are You Unemployed – Does Age & Gender Matter?

On April 18, 2012, in Uncategorized, by Kesh Thukaram

We live in one of the most modern economies in the UK and we should take pride in the fact that we have one of the best legal systems in the world, low corruption and one of the best places in the world for people to prosper. But does age and gender matter, especially if you are looking for a job. One would like to say – No but sadly that is not how the reality is.

It is common knowledge that unemployment is one of the highest in decades and also is high amongst the youth. However what is not very well known is that unemployment amongst women aged between 50 and 64 has risen by a staggering 27% in the last 12 months. Many of the women who have been made unemployed have been with their employers for long periods of time but unfortunately have become the target of continuous job cuts.

It is arguable that the rate of unemployment in this age group of 50 to 64 for women is skewed due to the fact that many of them were working in public sector, NHS and the third sector which has traditionally employed more women. Also many of these jobs were low skilled and technology advances meant that these jobs are no longer crucial and that there is no deliberate discrimination based on gender or age. While there is some truth in this argument, there are no statistical figures to validate this. The most common view unfortunately is that women in the age group 50 to 64 have been traditionally slow to re-skill themselves, tend to place more priority on family commitments than professional requirements and that they are less flexible when compared to men in terms of re-locating. There is also a view that many women in his category are not the main bread winners in their families and hence have chosen to call it a day and were encouraged to do so by the generous redundancy packages offered by some of the employers.

I have always felt strongly that age and gender should not be factor of either favouring or selecting against when it comes to any of the employment or other opportunities. In fact many people who I know have chosen to live in this country due to the non-discrimination aspects in our social approach. While I cannot control the world, what I have done is to ensure that older people and women do not pay more for their income protection insurance or unemployment insurance if they buy from us. Most of the insurers we work with make no discrimination in terms of pricing of their income protection insurance, payment protection insurance or unemployment protection insurance or redundancy insurance. While this may not make any difference at all to vast majority of women who have been made unemployed or on the verge of being made redundant, we in our own small way are trying hard to make a difference.


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