“The Chancellor may say economy is recovering but it doesn’t feel like that in Birmingham where unemployment is rising and the cost of living is spiralling” says Steve McCabe MP

Steve McCabe MP, Birmingham Selly Oak, has criticised the Chancellor for claiming the economy is in recovery after figures released by the Office for National Statistics shows unemployment rose in the West Midlands to 9.8%, well above the national average.


The Office for National Statistics released the Labour Market Statistics for May to July this year which show that although the national unemployment rate fell to 7.7%, in the West Midlands it was a very different story with the unemployment rate increasing by 7,000 to 9.8%.


The figures also reveal it is still bad news for young people looking for work across the country with youth unemployment rising by 9,400 and long term unemployment rising again.


Steve McCabe MP said:

“This week we have heard the Chancellor saying the economy is recovering and the Education Secretary blaming families for having to resort to food banks to feed themselves. The figures released today demonstrate how little the government understands what is happening to real people who simply can't cope with the relentless rise in the cost of living.


 “While it is good news that unemployment has fallen nationally these figures disguise what is really happening around the country. Unemployment has risen in the West Midlands to 9.8% well above the national average.


 “In my Selly Oak constituency those young people claiming Job Seeker’s Allowance rose from 4.2% to 4.4% which shows we need to do more here in Birmingham and across the country to tackle youth unemployment. This week I asked the Education Minister to adopt the Institute of Directors proposals for apprenticeships for under 19s given the enormous problems faced by young people trying to access the job market.”

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