Women outnumber men in the registration and application for jobs, according to Director of Labor Robert Farquharson.
In an interview with Eyewitness News at the latest ‘Labor on the Blocks’ job fair on Saturday, Farquharson said, with the exception of the construction field, women are turning up in higher numbers than men to apply for jobs, despite the fair offering of a variety of positions aimed at both genders.
“With the exception of the construction job fair, which we held the Kendall GL Issacs Gymnasium, the majority of persons that have come out would have been female,” Farquharson said.
“When we had the construction job fair, there were more men. I really can’t say why more men are not applying, but I really believe that the type of jobs that are being offered, the men just don’t seem to apply for.
“Primarily the companies we have are not gender biased, particularly for instance the Fusion Company that will operate the IMAX Theater. They are looking for servers; male and female, and cooks; male and female. And so, it is a wide cross section of jobs available.”
Cecila Strachan, acting permanent secretary in the Ministry of Labour said, nearly 9,000 persons have been registered in the departments job database.
“More than 8,000 persons have registered in our skills data bank, almost 9,000 and we are very pleased with the turn out,” Strachan said.
“This is the fifth ‘Labor on the Blocks’ and we are pleased not just with the turn out but also the companies that have come out to employ persons. Today we have more than a dozen companies.
“Initially there were about 1,000 persons that came out but, since then, the turn-out has been steady at about 500 persons.”
Member of Parliament (MP) for Fox Hill Shonel Ferguson said, the job fairs are “very important” for her constituents, as many of them have been unemployed for a “very long time”.
“I am so very happy that this is happening and if we can do it again in a month’s time, I would be even happier,” Ferguson said.
“There is a high unemployment rate here for a number a reasons.
“The economy has gone backward and sometimes, if you have a skill that is dependent on one of the areas that is in an industry that is slow, it affects your prospects. For instance, if you are a contractor and construction is slow, you are out of a job. You have rent or a family to feed and you still have a mortgage. So, something like this that gives peoples options is important.”
To date nearly 1,000 persons on New Providence have gained jobs through the Labour Department’s employment fairs.