Unemployment claimant numbers are on the rise throughout Oldham

NEW figures reveal Royton and Oldham West is the seventh highest area in the country for youth unemployment.

Jim McMahon

The statistics from the Department for Work and Pensions show the number of young people claiming Universal Credit and seeking work (715) has increased by 37.5 per-cent in the last 12 months.

They figures also reveal the overall unemployment rate in the constituency stands at 7.1 per-cent of the economically active population – a figure that is almost double the UK average.

The overall number of claimants of Job seekers Allowance (JSA) and Universal Credit also rose by 61 per-cent in the last year – an increase of 1,240 in Oldham West and Royton between April 2017 and April 2018.

Oldham West and Royton MP Jim McMahon has now asked the government to clarify what support it was giving to help people in Oldham into work, amid evidence of increasing unemployment.
“These statistics raise some serious concerns about what the government is doing to help people into decent, well paid and secure employment,” he said.

“The recent announcement of closure of Shop Direct highlights perfectly the challenges we face here in Oldham.

“My concern is that we have a government that is dogmatically pursuing Universal Credit, which is set-up to fail, not help people.”

The total number of unemployed claimants in Oldham West and Royton constituency in April 2018 was 3,275.

• The UK unemployment rate, which includes people not claiming benefits and is estimated from survey data, was 4.2 per-cent between January and March 2018.

• The number of claimants in Oldham West and Royton constituency is 1,240 higher than April 2017 and 310 higher than March 2018.

Four of the six areas with a higher number of JSA and Universal Credit claimers are in Birmingham topped by Ladywood with 1,080 youngsters.

• In MP Debbie Abrahams’ constituency of Oldham East (including Shaw and Crompton) and Saddleworth, the figures are equally depressing.

The rise in young people claiming JSA and UC is 610 an increase of 200 from April 2017 or a 48.8 per-cent increase.

Overall there are 2,930 claimants, a rise of 1,035 (55 per-cent) from 12 months ago.

Mrs Abrahams MP said: “These figures don’t take account of higher unemployment rates for certain groups such as disabled people, young people and ethnic minorities.

“It’s only going to get worse with the closure of the Shop Direct distribution centre in Shaw and as we start to see the impact of Brexit on the economy.”

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