Literature Review on Unemployment

2942 words 12 pages
Literature Review on Unemployment


Unemployment is recognised as one of the most challenging social problems currently facing Australia. In the last two decades and more recently with the global recession high levels of unemployment have become an established feature of the South Australian social and economic landscape, with young people aged 15 to 24 years among those hardest hit by unemployment.
In the past quarter the unemployment rate in South Australia has remained steady at 5.6% (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2009) but this figure is volatile and may increase next month. The youth unemployment rate, however, in South Australia remains at 21.9% with the Western and Northern suburbs having significantly higher
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Health Related behaviours

Unemployment has also been associated with changes in health related behaviours such as smoking, drug and alcohol use. The longer the period of unemployment the more a young unemployed person will consume alcohol ( Janlert and Hammarstrom, 1992; Hammarstrom, 1994). Young unemployed people are more likely to start smoking and to increase their use ( Hammarstrom and Janlert, 2002). Unemployed young people have a higher use of cannabis than those who are not unemployed ( Hammarstrom, 1994; Morrell et al, 1998).
It is, however, unclear to what extent these contribute to the poorer health of young unemployed people. Young unemployed people are also restricted in participating in ‘health promoting’ activities due to a lack of money, a lack of options and resources in the community and social stigma.

Moderating Factors which influence well-being in unemployment

While individuals and communities pay a price for unemployment in terms of the impact that unemployment has on health status and its broader social and economic costs suffered by the wider community, the literature does reveal many factors which influence well-being in unemployment including age ( Warr, 1987; Winefield et al, 1993), previous


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