May 06, 2020
Maori jobless numbers set to spike
Up to 40,000 Māori could lose their jobs over the next year.
That’s the estimate from Infometrics as it tries to consider the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the economy.
Economist Brad Olsen says the consultancy is picking unemployment could rise to 10 per cent, but the impact on the Māori workforce will be even tougher because of the large percentage in unskilled or semi-skilled work.
“During the global financial crisis, Māori employment dropped by around about 6%. for non-Māori employment rate only fell less 2 per cent, less than 3 times larger hit than the Māori economy during the GFC and I suspect our 40,000 jobs estimate could well be conservative. This is going to be a huge hit for whanau and I guess there's a real struggle here of how we get everyone back on their feet,” he says.
Brad Olsen says in the past Māori have often seemed invisible when policies are developed, and that needs to change to ensure there are opportunities for all in any recovery.
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