Eleven per cent of all Australian families don’t have anyone in the household who’s actually employed, new statistics reveal.
The figures, released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, say that amounts to 315,000 families, including 223,000 jobless one-parent families with 362,000 dependant children aged 0-14.
ABS director of labour force Cassandra Gligora said the proportion of jobless families with dependants had remained stable over recent years, aside from June 2009 where it dropped to nine per cent from nearly 12 per cent in 2005.
“Over one-third of one parent families with dependants were jobless, compared to one in 25 couple families with dependants,” she said in a statement.
“Of the jobless one-parent families, 89 per cent were single mother families.
“There were 638,400 dependants aged under 25 living in a jobless family and 83 per cent were children under 15 years.”
Australia Institute researcher David Richardson said these figures showed poverty was becoming an increasingly urgent issue.
“Since June 2008, on the eve of the global financial crisis, the number of jobless families with dependent children has increased from 258,400 to 315,300, a rise of 22 per cent,” he said in a statement.
Mr Richardson said the number of jobless single-parent families with dependents increased by 21.9 per cent, from 183,100 to 223,100 families over the same period.
“On the latest figures an unemployed couple with two children receiving the maximum benefits is below the Henderson poverty line by over 20 per cent,” he said.