Hartlepool jobless claimants fall by a third

Job Centre Plus. Picture by FRANK REID
Job Centre Plus. Picture by FRANK REID

The number of Hartlepool people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance in the last year has fallen by a third, new figures have revealed.

Statistics released by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) show that 1,970 people in the town claimed the benefit in July, exactly the same number as in June.

These are very encouraging figures.

Janet McKee of the Department for Work and Pensions

However, the figure is significantly down from the 2,938 people who were claiming the benefit in the same month last year.

The UK unemployment rate for the three months ending in June was highest in the North East at 8.1 per cent and lowest in the South West region at 4.4 per cent.

Janet McKee, from the DWP, told the Mail: “Unemployment for people of all ages in Hartlepool is down by 23 per cent on last year and for young people, aged between 18 and 24, it is down by 27 per cent.

“These are very encouraging figures.

“We’re also hoping to support young employment by holding a work experience event along with Job Centre Plus and Hartlepool Borough Council.

“It will be held in Middleton Grange Shopping Centre with a range of different job providers set to be there.

“It starts on August 24 and runs until September 1.”

The largest increase in UK workforce jobs for March 2015 was in the West Midlands, at 40,000, with the largest decrease in the South East, at 32,000.

Female employment is at a record 14.54million and a joint record employment rate at 68.7 per cent.

Female economic inactivity has also fallen to a record low.

Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith said: “Thanks to our long-term economic plan, the number of young people claiming unemployment benefits in the North East has more than halved over the past five years.

“On top of that, today’s figures show job vacancies at a near-record high – evidence of the continued confidence of British businesses, and potential for further growth in the UK economy.

“Our one nation Government is helping millions across the country to succeed and achieve their full potential. I was particularly pleased to see that wages are continuing to rise – meaning that hard-working people will see a real difference in their pay packets.”

The release of figures coincides with the launch of the #WEcan work experience campaign – designed to ensure that more young people have the opportunity to gain business skills for their first step on the career ladder.

The campaign aims to support young people to take up work experience opportunities and encourage businesses to create them, with 84 Youth Ambassadors leading activities across the country.