Fewer in town are working

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HARTLEPOOL has been named as having the highest percentage of economically inactive people in the region.

There are 31.3 per cent of people in the town who are economically inactive - people who are neither in employment or unemployed.

The group includes those who are looking after a home, retired, jobseekers, people who believe there are no jobs available, people who do not want a job and the long or short-term sick and disabled.

The rate for the North East is 26.6 per cent and the UK 23.9 per cent.

The news comes as workers union GMB warns the country’s economy is stalling and calls for the Bank of England’s monetary policy committee to put priority on growth all across the UK.

Hartlepool also has the fifth highest unemployment rate in the region, with 10.3 per cent of all residents being jobless.

This compares to 9.9 per cent for the regional average and 7.8 per cent in the UK.

The town also the second lowest employment amongst 16-64 year-olds, with just 61.6 per cent in employment.

This only fares better than Middlesbrough at 59 per cent and is followed by Redcar and Cleveland on 62.1 per cent.

GMB regional secretary Tom Brennan said: “These important figures on unemployment must be a serious cause for concern for both the Government and the communities affected.

“GMB experience is that the position on the ground is getting worse.

“With Government getting rid of tens of thousands of public sector jobs and with the private sector either stalling or going backwards the outlook in many areas is very worrying bordering on bleak.”