Notes on the data: Income support
People receiving an unemployment benefit, June 2014
Policy context: Those people who do not have access to secure and satisfying work are less likely to have an adequate income; and unemployment and underemployment are generally associated with reduced life opportunities and poorer health and wellbeing. Although the relationship between unemployment and health and wellbeing is complex and varies for different population groups, there is consistent evidence from research that unemployment is associated with adverse health outcomes; and unemployment has a direct effect on physical and mental health over and above the effects of socioeconomic status, poverty, risk factors, or prior ill-health [1,2,3].
Unemployment and its accompanying health effects are not distributed evenly through the population. Unemployment rates in Australia are highest among people aged less than 25 years, and are generally higher in rural and remote areas than in urban areas.
- Mathers CD, Schofield DJ. The health consequences of unemployment: the evidence. Med J Aust. 1998;168(4):178-82.
- Dollard MF, Winefield AH. Mental health: overemployment, underemployment, unemployment and healthy jobs. Aust e-J Adv Mental Hlth. 2002;1(3).
- World Health Organization (WHO). Promoting mental health: concepts, emerging evidence, practice. Geneva: WHO; 2005.
Notes: People receiving an ‘unemployment benefit' - which includes the Newstart Allowance or Youth Allowance (other)1 paid by the Department of Human Services - are shown as proportion of the eligible population (of persons aged 16 to 64 years).
1 Youth Allowance (other) is largely comprised of unemployed people aged 16 to 21 looking for full-time work or undertaking approved activities, such as part-time study or training. It excludes Youth Allowance customers who are full-time students or undertaking an apprenticeship/ traineeship.
Numerator: People in receipt of a Newstart Allowance or Youth Allowance (other) from the Department of Human Services
Denominator: People aged 16 to 64 years
Detail of analysis: Per cent
Source: Compiled by PHIDU based on data from the Department of Human Services, June 2014; and ABS Estimated Resident Population, 30 June 2013.