When Karina Bugeja is interviewed for a job, she is often asked the same question: 'What have you done for the past 10 years?'
When she answers truthfully – cleaner, babysitter, accountant, and more – truth is, she took time off to raise her children.
“I’m in that 50 and over bracket now,” she said.
“They always want to know what I’ve done the past decade … they don’t see raising a family as beneficial to them.
“I have done all sorts of work over the years; I don’t know if that works against me or not – from factory work to security work, and managing a shop … but now I can’t get a job.”
She said the overriding feeling she experiences not working and struggling to find a job is 'worthlessness'.
“Going out of the workforce, things are so much harder. All that self-confidence goes – it takes its toll,” she said.
She recently attended an information evening hosted by employment provider APM, which works with businesses to find people jobs. They say mature-aged people and those with disabilities struggle to find work, even though they are often excellent employees.
APM is currently running a campaign to find work for 85 local people looking for work.