Mrs. Dromey seems to have been making statements which are, how to put this, less than robustly certain?
The Office for National Statistics published new data showing that fewer female workers were sacked at the end of last year than male staff, most likely because more of them have jobs in the public sector.
Given that men have been losing jobs a great deal faster than women in a comparable economy, the US, this sounds about right. For female employment is indeed skewed to the public sector.
It\’s just that Harry Harperson has been running around screaming that the opposite is true, that women are losing their jobs faster than men.
Harriet Harman, the women’s minister, said: “There is a major fear about women being targeted by their employers during the downturn. This is unlawful.” Another senior minister said women could be set back for “a generation”.
The latest official employment statistics show that the number of women in full-time work fell by 53,000 in the last quarter, compared with a fall of 36,000 for men. It means women are losing full-time jobs at twice the rate of men, because men significantly outnumber women in the workplace.
Women MPs are disgruntled that so much emphasis is being placed on helping male-dominated industries, such as finance and motor manufacturing, when many jobs are being lost in “soft” sectors dominated by women, such as retail and catering.
The campaign to shield women from unfair job losses is being led by Harman and Vera Baird, the solicitor-general, and involves several Whitehall departments.