Around 3.1 million unemployed people in Germany actually want a job. People between the ages of 15 and 74 are not available for the labor market for various reasons, as the Federal Statistical Office explained on Friday. They are referred to as "hidden reserves" and account for around 17 percent of all non-employed people.
With a share of almost 56 percent, women are over-represented in the hidden reserve, as the statistics authority further announced. More than 37 percent of women between the ages of 25 and 59 reported that they could not get a job because they had to look after relatives. Among men, not even every 20th (less than 5 percent) gave this reason.
Job and family must be more compatible
The DGB Vice-President Elke Hannack called for nationwide and needs-based care offers - "not only for the little ones, but also for children of primary school age and people who need support and care". When looking for skilled workers, companies could not do without women either. They should finally recognize that people do gainful employment and care work and want to adjust their working hours to suit their life situation.
Some of the unemployed are not available for work at short notice, for example because they have to look after relatives, or they are not actively looking for work at all because they think they cannot find a suitable job. According to the analysis of the 2021 microcensus, the office counts almost 1.4 million people in these two groups. That was a significant increase of 0.5 million compared to 2019, which is partly due to the consequences of the corona pandemic, but also to a change in the survey method, as an expert explained.
There is also a third group of people who are particularly remote from the labor market and who are neither looking for a job nor are they available, but who expressed a general desire to work in the microcensus survey. This is about 1.8 million people who were not previously included in the hidden reserve in Germany.