Commenting on the latest employment figures published by the ONS today (Tuesday), which show that over the last year the unemployment rate for workers in Yorkshire & the Humber has risen from 110,000 to 135,000 (25,000 or a 23 per cent increase), the TUC’s Regional Secretary for Yorkshire & the Humber Bill Adams said:
“The chancellor’s economic plan just isn’t working for Yorkshire. Unemployment is higher than a year ago and low pay is locking more workers into a vicious cycle of poverty.
“This is the direct result of Rishi’s failure to pump money into much needed infrastructure investment, skills retraining, and green jobs creation. If the chancellor won’t prioritise Yorkshire, then he needs to give the money to the mayors and local councils who will.
“Our recovery is still fragile, with more than 125,000 workers on furlough. Instead of pulling the rug out from under the feet of businesses and workers, the chancellor must extend the furlough scheme for as long as is needed to protect jobs and livelihoods – and work towards setting up a permanent short-time work scheme to deal with future crises.”
Commenting on ONS figures also published today that show the number of people in Yorkshire on zero-hours contracts has risen by 31,000 from 49,000 in Q1 to 80,000 in Q2 (an increase of 63 per cent quarter on quarter, but annualised fall on Q2 2020 of 19 per cent), Bill Adams said:
“It’s shocking that Yorkshire’s recovery seems to be built on the back of exploitative zero hours contracts.
“Many of these are the key workers who worked through Covid-19, but still face the uncertainty of not knowing when their next shift will be. And we know BME women are twice as likely to be on these low-paid, insecure contracts than white men.
“Insecure workers have been most likely to lose their jobs during the pandemic, but the use of these contracts remains stubbornly high.
“Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect at work. Government must ban zero-hours contracts now.”
The tourist hotspots of Leeds and North Yorkshire are experiencing a higher level of job density (the number of jobs per head, of resident population, aged 16 to 64 years, in a given area) than other parts of the region, likely due to the high demand for employment in the hospitality and related sectors.
- Today’s labour market statistics from the ONS are available here: https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/employmentandemployeetypes/bulletins/regionallabourmarket/latest
- The Trades Union Congress (TUC) exists to make the working world a better place for everyone. We bring together more than 5.5 million working people who make up our 48 member unions. We support unions to grow and thrive, and we stand up for everyone who works for a living.
Gareth Forest (Lewis)
0113 200 1075
TUC national press office
020 7467 1248
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