Jobless women total hits 22-year high

The number of unemployed women has reached a 22-year high of more than a million prompting warnings tonight of worse to come.

Today's Office for National Statistics figures also showed that workers in part-time jobs because they cannot find a full-time work have reached a record high.

There was a 31,000 increase in the number of women out of work in the three months to September.

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: "Female unemployment has been rising for over a year and hit a 22-year high this autumn.

"With the Office for Budget Responsibility predicting half a million further job losses in the female-dominated public sector, women look likely to suffer rising joblessness for some time to come."

Dr John Philpott, chief economic adviser at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, said: "There are signs that cuts in public spending are already having an adverse impact on job prospects for women, with the unemployment rate for women now at 7% - higher than at any point since the start of the jobs recession in 2008.

"Women are likely to have been adversely affected by fewer vacancies in public administration, education, health and social work.

"The public sector, which has a relatively high concentration of female workers, is also the only sector to record an increase in redundancies in the latest quarter."

The Government concentrated on other figures which showed that unemployment in the UK fell by 9,000 to 2.45 million in the latest quarter, while the numbers claiming Jobseeker's Allowance fell by 3,700 in October to 1.47 million, the first monthly fall since July.

During Prime Minister's Questions, David Cameron welcomed the fall in the unemployment rate as a "good sign" that the Government's "private sector led recovery" had taken hold.

"What we have to do is make sure there is a private sector-led recovery - that's why we've got low interest rates, we've got corporation tax coming down, we've got cuts in national insurance for new firms that are hiring people, we've got less regulation."

The number of full-time workers fell by 62,000 to reach 18.17 million, while part-time employment was almost eight million, up by 142,000 from the quarter to June.

Of this total, two million were men and almost six million were women.

Public sector employment, which is set to be hit by the Government's spending cuts, was down by 22,000 to 6.05 million, while employment in private firms increased by 308,000 to 23.11 million.

Job vacancies fell by 27,000 to 453,000 in the three months to October, with education showing the biggest drop.

Average earnings increased by 2% in the year to September, up by 0.3% from the previous month, leaving average pay, including bonuses, at £453 a week.

Employment minister Chris Grayling said: "Unemployment is down and employment is up, which is good news. The private sector is leading the way and creating jobs and opportunities for people across the country. Today's figures show that businesses are responding well and we will continue to help them expand and develop, as the economy grows."

David Kern, chief economist at the British Chambers of Commerce, said: "These figures are better than expected. Overall, the new figures are positive, although we have not yet seen the negative impact on jobs that will result from the tough deficit-cutting measures due to be implemented in 2011. On this basis, we reiterate the BCC's forecast that UK unemployment is likely to record temporary increases over the next 18 months."

Dave Prentis, Unison's general secretary, said: "These figures do not disguise the dark storm clouds gathering over our economy. Part-time jobs are not a viable alternative for families struggling to pay their bills.

"Our research shows there are, on average, four unemployed people chasing every vacant job across the country. Some regions are harder hit. In Hackney there are 31 unemployed people for every advertised job. The Tories have done nothing more than cross their fingers and make a wish for a private sector-led recovery."

Unemployment in the regions between July and September was:

Region Totals Unemployed

North East: 116,000 / minus 4,000 / 9.0%

North West: 278,000 / plus 1,000 / 8.1%

Yorkshire/Humber: 236,000: minus 8,000 / 9.0%

East Midlands: 182,000 / plus 12,000 / 8.0%

West Midlands: 233,000 / plus 13,000 / 8.7%

East: 199,000 / minus 4,000 / 6.6%

London: 374,000 / minus 10,000 / 9.0%

South East: 278,000 / plus 11,000 / 6.2%

South West: 148,000 / minus 17,000 / 5.5%

Wales: 117,000 / minus 12,000 / 8.1%

Scotland: 229,000 / plus 6,000 / 8.5%

N Ireland: 58,000 / plus 3,000 / 7.0%

On the last day of campaigning before the polling booths open, the SNP leader has written to voters in a final attempt to convince them to vote for independence
voicesIs a huge gamble on oil keeping the First Minister up at night?
A 'Sir Alex Feguson' tattoo

Arts and Entertainment
Liam Neeson said he wouldn't

Liam Neeson's Downton dreams

voicesApple continually kill off smaller app developers, and that's no good for anyone
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Arts and Entertainment
Ben Whishaw is replacing Colin Firth as the voice of Paddington Bear

Thriller is set in the secret world of British espionage

Life and Style

ScienceGallery: Otherwise known as 'the best damn photos of space you'll see till 2015'
travelWhy Japan's love hotels are thriving through an economic downturn
Life and Style

Bomber jacket worn by Mary Berry sells out within an hour

Life and Style
Alexander McQueen A/W 2014
fashionPolitics aside, tartan is on-trend again this season
Arts and Entertainment
Rapper Jay Z performs on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury in 2008
musicSinger sued over use of the single-syllable sample in 'Run This Town'
Joel jumps over the board...and into a giant hole
footballFrom joy to despair in a matter of seconds
Arts and Entertainment
Pointless host Alexander Armstrong will voice Danger Mouse on CBBC

Much-loved cartoon character returns - without Sir David Jason

Arts and Entertainment
Meera Syal was a member of the team that created Goodness Gracious Me

Actress to appear in second series of the hugely popular crime drama

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Volunteer your expertise as Trustee for The Society of Experimental Biology

Unpaid Voluntary Position : Reach Volunteering: Promising volunteer Trustee op...

Email Designer

£30000 - £35000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...

Psychology Teacher

£110 - £130 per hour: Randstad Education Reading: Psychology Teacher needed fo...

Food Technology Teacher

£85 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: Randstad Education are curren...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week