Cost of commutes hits employment options of low skilled workers

Cost of commutes hits employment options of low skilled workers
3rd Jun 2011

The financial and work/life balance cost of commuting has hit the employment options for low skilled workers as well as others workplace experts say, reports the Recruiter.

Office for National Statistics figures show that commuters working in London tend to take longer to travel to work - only 44% enduring a journey of 30 minutes or less, with 16% taking more than
an hour.

.A Work Foundation spokesperson told Recruiter that for highly paid and highly skilled workers going the extra mile for work may not be a concern but for lower skilled and lower paid groups those few extra miles can hit their pockets hard.

“Commuting to find work is a good thing but it ignores the practical difficulties particularly in parts of the country where public transport is not very good. This is a problem for low skilled groups on lower wages who are less likely to have cars. The other practical issue is childcare. If you are commuting for a long time, it is a long time out of your day. Most people can’t work while they’re commuting unlike in some high skilled jobs.”

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber adds: “Politicians with free travel passes often fail to understand that is impossible for people to afford long and expensive commutes for low-paid jobs.

“With the availability of work varying greatly across the country, transport costs must be a more important factor for employment schemes.

“These figures also show that while workers in and around London are put under extreme pressure with lengthy commutes and rising transport fares, petrol prices are what matters most outside the capital, where more than seven in ten people drive to work.”


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