6220.0 - Persons Not in the Labour Force, Australia, Sep 2009 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 24/03/2010   
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24 March, 2010
Embargo: 11.30 am (CANBERRA TIME) 24/03/2010
A third of Australia's population not in the labour force: ABS

In September 2009, there were almost 5.7 million people aged 15 years and over who were not in the labour force, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). This represents a third (33%) of the civilian population aged 15 years and over.

Of the people not in the labour force in September 2009, around 71% did not want to work, of whom approximately a quarter (24%) were aged 70 and over and were retired or voluntarily inactive.

There were 111,800 discouraged job seekers in September 2009, which was up from the 73,900 in September 2008. These people wanted to work and were available to work but most commonly reported not actively looking for work because they were considered too old by employers (36%) or because there were no jobs in their locality or line of work (21%)
There were 3.4 million women not in the labour force, 44% of whom stated that either home duties or caring for children was their main activity when not in the labour force.

Further details can be found in Persons Not in the Labour Force, Australia, September 2009 (cat. no. 6220.0).