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FOCUS: Which islanders are most likely to juggle multiple jobs?

FOCUS: Which islanders are most likely to juggle multiple jobs?

Monday 25 March 2024

FOCUS: Which islanders are most likely to juggle multiple jobs?

Monday 25 March 2024


Women, national minorities and hospitality workers are most likely to have multiple jobs, recent data has revealed.

A report published by Statistics Jersey this week showed that women (8.6%) were more likely to have a second job than men (6.9%) in Jersey.

The Employment Statistics report also revealed that Latvian, Spanish, Bulgarian and Kenyan workers were more than twice as likely to have a second job than the average across all nationalities in the island.

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Pictured: Proportion of employed people working two or more jobs by self-declared nationality as of June 2023. (Statistics Jersey)

According to the report, the breakdown of individuals with multiple jobs per sector is as follows:

  • 12% of workers in the hospitality sector have second jobs
  • 11% of education, health, and service professionals have second jobs
  • 11% of business professionals have second jobs
  • 7% of retail workers have second jobs
  • 7% of civil servants have second jobs
  • 4% of finance and legal professionals have second jobs.

Express spoke to Kate Wright, an HR consultant and chair of a diversity campaign group The Diversity Network, about the reasons behind this trend. 

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Pictured: Proportion of employed people working two or more jobs as of June 2023. (Statistics Jersey)

She also discussed ways that employers can support financially strained workers to potentially alleviate the need to work multiple jobs.

Low paid roles and high cost-of-living

"The reason why so many women, and especially women from ethnic minority backgrounds, are working two jobs compared to other demographics is because they tend to be the ones working in the lowest paid roles and sectors, such as hospitality and the care sector," explained Ms Wright.

"As well as meeting the high costs of living in Jersey, many of these workers from overseas are under pressure to send money back home to support their children and families.

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Pictured: Proportion of people with second jobs by sector, where their main job is in the education, health and other services sector (June 2023).

"This means they are effectively having to support two sets of living costs, one in Jersey and one in their home country.

"Some of these workers will be here on short-term visas. Others may be here in the longer term, but because they may have less than five years' residency they will have fewer rights than other employees.

"They may also be unclear as to where they can access advice and medical care, which means, for example, that they may not be accessing a GP if they are unwell."

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Pictured: Many work permit holders lacked understanding about how Jersey's healthcare system operates, according to a report. 

2023 review of the welfare and rights of employees arriving on the island with work permits found that work permit holders were often unaware of how the healthcare system operated in Jersey before their arrival because this information was not readily available.

Supporting overseas and financially insecure workers

To tackle this problem, Ms Wright said that employers should be compassionate and supportive towards workers who are struggling financially, while also recognising the difficulties faced by employees who hold multiple jobs.

She said: "In terms of employers supporting people with two, and sometimes three jobs, it's really important that they are firstly aware that this is even the case for some of their employees and, therefore, the extra stresses and pressures these workers might be experiencing."

For overseas workers, Ms Wright underscored the need for clarity on immigration policies and guidance on living, working, and accessing support in Jersey.

She said: "Before an employer even recruits a worker from overseas, they need to make sure that both they and the worker fully understand the implications of Jersey's immigration policies and laws.

"They also need to ensure that the overseas employee understands how things like the healthcare system work in Jersey."

To support lower-income workers, Ms Wright suggested that employers should make an effort to recognise and resolve their financial worries.

She said they should provide guidance to overseas staff, take proactive steps to address pay disparities while maintaining equitable pay practices and to invest in in employee training and development.

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Pictured: Proportion of people with second jobs by sector, where their main job is in the hotels, restaurants and bars sector. (June 2023)

The Diversity Network has urged employers to engage in their '6 Point Plan', a programme aimed at helping employees manage finances and alleviate money-related stress.

This initiative, particularly beneficial for workers with multiple jobs and women facing a 12% gender pay gap, provides practical support for those struggling financially.

She also encouraged employers to be able to identify signs of financial struggle among their employees and provide appropriate guidance, including referrals to local charities like Community Savings and Citizens Advice.

Fair pay practices

Ms Wright also appealed to employers to uphold fair pay practices, including paying the Living Wage and addressing the gender and ethnicity pay gaps.

She said: "I would also urge employers to consider how they can support lower-paid workers to progress in their careers and to develop the skills that will enable them to move into better-paid jobs so that the pressure to have more than one job is reduced.

"Providing learning and development opportunities for all employees is an investment in growth and sustainability; it is in the organisation's interests as well as their employees."

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