Unemployment is an economic and social issue that occurs when individuals who are willing and able to work are unable to secure a job,
This phenomenon affects not only individuals but also communities and entire nations, with far-reaching consequences for both the unemployed and society at large.
The imbalance between the supply and demand for labor is one of many key factors contributing to unemployment.
Impact of Unemployment on Individuals
Unemployment can impact a person financially and psychologically since the person will feel very pressured to meet the basic needs of his family because you need a stable income to survive. Also, a long and prolonged period of unemployment can lead to skill erosion which will be eventually harder to fit again into the workforce.
Multifaceted Approaches to Addressing Unemployment
Dealing with unemployment requires a multifaceted approach that involves both individual and societal interventions. From enhancing education and skills development to implementing sound economic policies, mitigating the impact of unemployment requires collaboration among governments, businesses, and communities. By understanding the complex factors contributing to unemployment, societies can work toward creating more resilient and inclusive economies.
Unemployment in Lebanon: A Complex Scenario
When it comes to unemployment in Lebanon, ever since Coronavirus hit Lebanon, it started affecting the country negatively with a lot of businesses being closed for good.
But what made it worse is the prolonged economic crisis that also crushed job seekers and business owners. Some companies started paying in fresh dollars, some started paying half in Lebanese pounds and the other half in dollars and some of them couldn’t even pay 1% in fresh dollars.
However, as of November 2023, this changed a lot with most of the companies if not all of them now paying in fresh dollars.
Gender Dynamics in Lebanon’s Unemployment
I believe that this economic crisis was very bad for women especially since the gender pay gap is still here and it has been a longstanding issue globally, and it is likely to persist in the context of Lebanon. Women may face challenges in earning wages that are equal to their male counterparts, contributing to economic disparities.
Also, since Lebanon is a small country, some job opportunities might not be “ideal” for women because of the Lebanese context and we call that occupational segregation, where women are concentrated in certain industries or roles, may affect the types of jobs available to them.
The economic crisis may disproportionately affect certain sectors, causing increased female unemployment. Societal and cultural norms in Lebanon can influence women’s workforce participation. Traditional gender roles may limit job opportunities for women by affecting the perceived suitability of certain roles.
Informal Economy and Women’s Representation
Lebanon’s substantial informal economy often sees women overrepresented in such work, amplifying challenges in job security and social protection, particularly during economic downturns.
The economic crisis may worsen work-life balance challenges for women, especially those with caregiving responsibilities. Limited access to affordable childcare and support can hinder women’s professional progress.
Finally, discrimination and biases in the workplace can influence hiring decisions and career advancement opportunities. Women may face challenges in accessing certain professions or progressing into leadership roles.
The success of beating unemployment in Lebanon relies on coordinated efforts from the government, private sector, and international community. This involves stabilizing the economy and creating a job-friendly environment. Regarding women’s unemployment in Lebanon, a holistic approach is needed. This includes considering economic policies, gender-sensitive labor market initiatives, and efforts to challenge societal norms. Implementing measures like equal pay policies, supportive work environments, and targeted support for women entrepreneurs can help mitigate the impact of unemployment on women. Addressing broader economic challenges in Lebanon is crucial for creating a stable and inclusive job market for both genders.
Written by: Carine Jamous
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