Age and gender

Document type
Briefing
Corporate author(s)
Skills for Care (Organization)
Publisher
Skills for Care
Date of publication
1 February 2008
Series
NMDS-SC briefing; 5
Subject(s)
Social Work, Social Care and Social Services
Collection
Social welfare
Material type
Reports

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This briefing from the National Minimum Data Set for Social Care concerns the age and gender of the social care workforce. The workforce in the social care sector has traditionally been thought to be both ageing and polarised by gender. In common with other areas of the economy, a shortfall in workers caused by the baby-boomer cohort reaching retirement age has been feared. The sector has also been viewed as one with high levels of female participation and as one that fails to attract both younger workers and male workers. This briefing looks at what the data collected so far tells of the age and gender of the social care workforce and challenges whether these traditionally held views represent a true reflection of the sector in 2007. The age profile shows that around one third of workers are aged 45 or over, with fifteen percent aged 55 or over. Around two thirds of workers do not start working in social care until they are aged 30 or over. The sector may be beginning to attract males, 19% of those who joined in 2005/6 were male. Women make up 83% of the workforce and are represented in this proportion at all grades including managerial. However at Senior Management level males make up 35% of the workforce

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