Purpose: The purpose of this paper was to establish whether precariousness of life as determined by temporary employment contributed to anxiety and depression and whether its consequences on daily life were differentiated in relation to gender. Design/methodology/approach: A structural equation analysis of anxiety and depression with aspects of precariousness of life as model predictors was explored with t-test and correlation analyses used to explore gender differences in the study variables. Findings: The structural equation model produced strong evidence to suggest that precariousness of life was a significant predictor of both anxiety and depression. Women reported significantly higher scores than men on distrust toward the professional future and the emotional consequences on everyday life, anxiety and depression. As hypothesized, the negative consequences of temporary work in personal and family life appear more evident in women. Practical implications: The results suggest that organizations should promote training courses on coping strategies to prevent the negative impact of precariousness of life aspects on anxiety and depression. Originality/value: This study provides evidence supporting that temporary employment contributes to health consequences, which apply differently by gender. The study broadens understanding of temporary work management especially in regards to its health impact on female temporary workers. Furthermore, the Precariousness of Life Inventory has demonstrated an ability to tap into the latent factors of precariousness of life, revealing important gender differences and an ability to contribute to anxiety and depression. © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
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