Photo: Stuart Coleman©2012

Following an announcement today that youth unemployment nationally has dropped the latest figures for Oldham East and Saddleworth indicate that long-term youth unemployment in the ward increased significantly between March 2011 and March 2012.

Commenting on her constituency’s most recent unemployment data Debbie Abrahams, MP for Oldham East and Saddleworth, said, “Long term youth unemployment here in Oldham East and Saddleworth has risen by 270 (164%) over the last year.” This rise contrasts against a drop of 9,000 in youth unemployment nationally.

In response to today’s figures the government states that the problem existed before the recession and recovery will follow economic growth but significant growth this year is doubtful. The Bank of England recently changed its prediction for inflation to fall and now expects it to remain at 3% for the next quarter. Labour believes the solution lies in funding 100,000 youth jobs with a tax on bankers’ bonuses and a tax break for small firms taking on extra workers.

It appears from today’s figures that areas like Oldham need targeted support with specific strategies to help the young unemployed and without economic growth and increased job opportunities it’s not evident how this problem will be resolved in the short term. It is clear that young people need hope, not despair and that the route to work should be as clearly marked as the route to further education has been.

Office for National Statistics: Crown Copyright Reserved  (from Nomis on 18th April 2012)

Area type: Parliamentary constituency
Area name: Oldham East and Saddleworth
Group: Aged 18-24, claiming for over 6 months
March 2011: 165
March 2012: 435
Increase Mar 11-Mar 12: 164%
Data rounded to nearest: 5

 

 

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