New record high for female employment

OfficeForNatStatsFigures published today show that 2,624,000 people in Scotland were in work between February and April, an increase of 53,000 compared to the same period in 2014 and 14,000 compared to the last quarter.

The Labour Market Statistics published by the Office for National Statistics also show that Scotland’s unemployment level has fallen by 31 per cent from its peak in 2010, the equivalent of 74,000 people.

The data also showed that female employment is now at a record high of 72.5 per cent, while youth unemployment, now at 59,000, is at its lowest level and rate (13.9 per cent) in six years.

The overall unemployment rate is 5.9 per cent, unchanged on the previous quarter and 0.8 percentage points lower over the year.

The overall employment rate increased to 74.4 per cent, up 1.2 percentage points from this time last year.

Roseanna Cunningham
Roseanna Cunningham

Cabinet Secretary for fair work, skills and training Roseanna Cunningham said: “Today’s figures continue to show improvements in youth and women’s employment, pushing us to the forefront of work to help people into jobs across Europe. Youth unemployment is at its lowest level and rate in six years and female participation in the labour market continues to improve.

“There are also now 74,000 fewer Scots unemployed since the peak of the recession in 2010, great news for the economy, which is also making a difference to the lives of individual Scots. Today’s news follows a range of activity to support more people into jobs including ensuring our colleges are fully focused on the employability of young people, highlighting the importance of apprenticeships and improved options on childcare to help more women back in the workforce.

“However, there are areas where further work is needed, particularly as recent quarters have seen small rises in unemployment. Much of that change appears to have been caused by people – mostly women – re-entering the labour market following the recession, and as such, the labour market is seeing an influx in the numbers of people seeking jobs. We will continue to use all the levers at our disposal to help them into employment, and drive the economy forward.

“There is absolutely no room for complacency when it comes to continuing to create high quality employment opportunities across the country and through the work of the Smith Commission and progress on the Scotland Bill, we will continue to push for powers over welfare and taxation that are fit for a modern Scotland.”

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