Ethnic inequalities in labour market participation?

ethnicity-blog-img-1Using recently published 2011 Census data the Centre on Dynamics of Ethnicity has analysed ethnic differences in labour market participation for men and women aged 25 to 49 in England and Wales.

Summary findings

  • The White ethnic groups(with the marked exception of the Gypsy or Irish Traveller group) were in a more advantaged position in the labour market compared with other ethnic groups.
  • This advantage is apparent from rates of economic activity and unemployment. For economic activity, only Indian men and Black Caribbean women had a similar rate to the White ethnic groups. For unemployment, Pakistani men had rates that were one and a half times the rate for White British men, and Black Caribbean men had rates almost three times as high. Pakistani women’s unemployment rate was more than three times White British women’s, and for Black Caribbean women, unemployment was more than twice White British women’s.

  • Women had lower rates of economic activity than men in all ethnic groups. However, this difference was greatest for Bangladeshi (87% for men vs. 40% for women), Pakistani (88% vs. 43%), Arab (69% vs. 40%) and White Gypsy or Irish Traveller (67% vs. 41%) groups.
  • The White Gypsy or Irish Traveller group was particularly disadvantaged. Both men and women had very low rates of economic activity (67% for men and 41% for women) and very high rates of unemployment (16% for men and 19% for women).
  • Men and women in each of the Black and Mixed Black ethnic groups, except for Black Caribbean women, had high rates of unemployment.
  • One third of Bangladeshi economically active men were in part-time work, a surprisingly high rate that was equivalent to that for Bangladeshi women.

To open the full briefing please click here.

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