WORKING GIRL: Latest data from the ABS shows more women than men are working in the Tweed.
WORKING GIRL: Latest data from the ABS shows more women than men are working in the Tweed. Brett Wortman

Sisters are doing it for themselves, in the job stakes

WHEN it comes to working in the Tweed/Richmond area, it could be a case of sisters doing it for themselves.

According to the most recent employment figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, there are more women working on the Tweed than there are men.

The ABS data shows there were 52,000 men working in the Tweed Richmond area during September, while there were 54,000 women.

However, according to Murwillumbah and District Chamber of Commerce president Ilze Jaunberzins, the statistics could be the result of social need, rather than any equality movement.

"We are quite an impoverished area and women often need to work to provide an income for their families' domestic needs,” she said.

"Also there are a lot of single families in the region and the responsibility to house and feed a family falls a lot on women so they are compelled to go to work.”

However, she didn't rule out the chance the region was shrugging off any gender bias.

"It would be a refreshing paradigm shift if it was the case,” she said. "But it would be interesting to look into the nature of the jobs to see the break-up between white/blue collar employment and full and part-time employment.”

The unemployment rate in the area fell to 5 per cent. However, just over half the population in the area was working, with the employed to population ratio sitting at 51.6 per cent.

The participation rate also fell to 54.3 per cent.

At the same time the median duration of job searches in the Tweed and Richmond blew out to 57 weeks, from 24 weeks in August. The area had reached a low of six weeks in May but that was preceded by an inhospitable 70 weeks the previous month.

The median duration of job search on the Gold Coast dropped to nine weeks in September from 23 weeks in August.

The data continues a run for the region in which the median time of job search has exceeded six months just once in the past 24 months, in October last year when it hit 28 weeks.

On the Gold Coast, the unemployment rate stayed at 4.8 per cent with a participation rate of 66.8 per cent.

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