Several studies have documented that older workers who live in areas with higher unemployment rates are more likely to leave work for health and non-health reasons. Due to tracking of area disadvantage over the life course, and because negative individual health and socioeconomic factors are more likely to develop in individuals from disadvantaged areas, we do not know at what specific ages, and through which specific pathways, area unemployment may be influencing retirement age. Using data from the MRC National Survey of Health and Development, we use structural equation modelling to investigate pathways linking local authority unemployment at three ages (4y, 26y and 53y) to age of retirement (right-censored). We explored five hypothesized pathways: (1) residential tracking, (2) health, (3) employment status, (4) occupational class, and (5) education. Initially, pathways between life course area unemployment, each pathway and retirement age were assessed individually. Mediation pathways were tested in the full model. Our results showed that area unemployment tracked across the life course. Higher area unemployment at ages 4 and 53 were independently associated with earlier retirement age [1% increase = mean -0.64 (95% CI: -1.12, -0.16) and -0.25 (95% CI: -0.43, -0.06) years]. Both were explained by adjustment for individual employment status at ages 26 and 53 years. Higher area unemployment at age 26 was associated with poorer health and lower likelihood of employment at aged 53; and these 2 individual pathways were identified as the key mediators between area unemployment and retirement age. In conclusion, these results suggest that interventions designed to create local employment opportunities for young adults should lead to extended working through improved employment and health at mid-life.
Keywords: Cohort; Employment; Health inequality; Life; Neighbourhood/place; Retirement; Socioeconomic factors; UK.
Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Longitudinal Associations of Experiences of Adversity and Socioeconomic Disadvantage During Childhood With Labour Force Participation and Exit in Later AdulthoodAE Fahy et al. Soc Sci Med 183, 80-87. PMID 28475902.The Extending Working Lives (EWL) agenda seeks to sustain employment up to and beyond traditional retirement ages. This study examined the potential role of childhood fac …
The Influence of Chronic Health Problems and Work-Related Factors on Loss of Paid Employment Among Older WorkersFR Leijten et al. J Epidemiol Community Health 69 (11), 1058-65. PMID 26112957.All health problems affected disability benefits to a similar extent, but psychological health problems especially predicted unemployment and early retirement. For older …
Physical and Cognitive Capability in Mid-Adulthood as Determinants of Retirement and Extended Working Life in a British Cohort StudyM Stafford et al. Scand J Work Environ Health 43 (1), 15-23. PMID 27576104.Objective Policy in many industrialized countries increasingly emphasizes extended working life. We examined associations between physical and cognitive capability in mid …
Influence of Poor Health on Exit From Paid Employment: A Systematic ReviewRM van Rijn et al. Occup Environ Med 71 (4), 295-301. PMID 24169931. - ReviewThe objective was to provide a systematic literature review on associations between poor health and exit from paid employment through disability pension, unemployment and …
In-work Tax Credits for Families and Their Impact on Health Status in AdultsF Pega et al. Cochrane Database Syst Rev (8), CD009963. PMID 23921458. - ReviewIn summary, the small and methodologically limited existing body of evidence with a high risk of bias provides no evidence for an effect of in-work tax credit for familie …
Cited by 1 PubMed Central articles
Determinants of Long-Term Unemployment in Early Adulthood: A Finnish Birth Cohort StudyT Lallukka et al. SSM Popul Health 8, 100410. PMID 31193554.Cumulative contributions of social and health-related determinants to long-term unemployment during early working life among young adults are poorly understood. Therefore …