THE NUMBER of unemployed women in Hounslow has dropped below the national average for the first time in three years.
Historically, more women in the borough claim Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) than the average UK woman, suggesting a lack of female friendly jobs or employers in the area.
However, figures just released show in January 2012, 2.5 per cent of women in Hounslow, approximately 6,035, claimed the benefit, compared to the national average of 2.6 per cent.
A spokesperson from Women and Work Group, a charity for unemployed women and women in low paid jobs, said: "In an economic downturn the first jobs to go are jobs in the public sector and admin staff. These roles are typically held by women, which is why you see a lot of women badly hit by the recession."
In Hounslow, administration jobs were cut by Hounslow Council and West Middlesex Hospital.
Stephen Fry, Chief Executive of Hounslow Chamber of Commerce, said: "In times of recession we see more part time jobs created which women tend to take so they can balance work with their home life. This could be why the gap is equalling up."
Mr Fry added women tend to suffer re-entering the job market after taking a break, as qualifications can no longer be valid meaning they can be unable to find a job at the same level.
Brentford and Isleworth MP Mary Macleod called for more support for women who are out of work.
She said: “Women are four times more likely to be in part time employment which can sometimes put them in a much more vulnerable position when companies are looking to cut back on staff.”
She added she is organising a jobs fair to be hosted by West Thames College on the 30th March.