The Finnish Business and Policy Forum (EVA) has expressed its concern about the nearly 79,000 men in the prime working-age group who are not in employment, not in education and not eligible for disability pension.
“Finland is home to 78,657 prime working-age men who can be labelled as missing workers. Not much is known about the activities of these 25–54-year-old men – except that they have disappeared from the labour force, apparently permanently,” EVA states in a report published on Thursday.
Almost two-thirds, or 50,400, of such men fall into the category of others outside the labour force in employment statistics: they are therefore neither job seekers, nor incapacitated for work. The employment prospects of the remaining 28,200 25–54-year-old men outside the labour force, in turn, are marred by their low education levels, extended periods of joblessness and lack of prior work experience.
The phenomenon is part of the male employment crisis, believes Jussi Pyykkönen, an analyst at the We Foundation.
“The accelerating structural change has especially reduced the number of manufacturing jobs. Unemployment has affected several male manual labourers with little if any post-primary education – let alone education that would solidify their position in the labour market,” he says in a press release from EVA.
The proportion of men falling into the category of others outside the labour force has grown steadily over the past couple of decades, highlights EVA. The proportion of such men out of the 25–54-year-old male population has almost doubled from 2.4 per cent to 4.7 per cent since 1987, translating to an average annual increase of roughly 1,000.
The category of others outside the labour force encompasses people outside the labour force who are not students, conscripts, conscientious objectors or pensioners, according to Statistics Finland.
The proportion of all prime working-age men outside the labour force of the respective age cohort, meanwhile, stands at 7.4 per cent in Finland. In 2015, the country was home to some 1,100,000 25–54-year-old men, 805,000 of whom were employed and 130,000 of whom were unemployed.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Anni Reenpää – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi