Jobs survey reveals underemployment and unpaid work key issues for Tasmanian workers

The results of the combined Australia Institute Tasmania and Unions Tasmania’s jobs survey are in and they spotlight underemployment and unpaid work as key issues for respondents.

While Tasmania’s unemployment rate sits at around the national average at 5.6% the survey results have revealed that underemployment is a critical issue for many Tasmanian workers.

The importance of underemployment is being increasingly recognised as a vital part of the unemployment picture, including by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Respondents to the survey also identified working additional hours and not being paid for them as a significant concern.

Key findings of the jobs survey:

  • Over 60% of respondents indicated they want more hours to help make ends meet;
  • 80% of respondents answered that they were required to sometimes work extra hours;
  • When asked if they were always paid for these hours or given time off in lieu, only 44.3% answered ‘always’ leaving 56% of respondents who answered either ‘sometimes’, ‘harder ever’ or ‘ever’.
  • Of those who answered that they ‘hardly ever’ get paid overtime, only 34.4% say they have enough hours to make ends meet.

Full results available – here

Quotes attributable to Jessica Munday

“The survey results should be a wake-up call to the Hodgman Government that headline unemployment figures aren’t the only thing that matters when we’re talking about jobs in Tasmania,” said Jessica Munday, Secretary Unions Tasmania.

“The jobs survey confirms what Tasmanian members have been telling their unions for some time. They want more hours but they can’t get them. They are working longer, for less. And they care deeply about job security and respect at work.”

“By focusing solely on unemployment numbers, our Government has ignored the huge problem of under-employment. We can’t have a genuine conversation about jobs without talking about underemployment too,” said Ms Munday.

Quotes attributed to Leanne Minshull

“The Tasmanian economy has strengthened, but full-time employment has failed to keep pace,” Director of The Australia Institute Tasmania, Leanne Minshull said.

“Total employment grew by 3.8% in the last year, but most of those jobs – over eight thousand out of nine thousand new jobs were part-time. 

“Full-time employment grew more slowly in Tasmania than the national average.

“If we don’t produce more full-time and secure employment in this period of growth, Tasmania risks creating two speed economy,” Ms Minshull said.

For further comment from Unions Tasmania contact Jessica Munday – 0417 454 809

For further comment from The Australia Institute contact Leanne Minshull – 0455 999 460

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