BURTON’S MP has spoken of his delight after a significant drop in unemployment across the area.
The amount of people out of work in East Staffordshire and South Derbyshire dropped by 258 last month.
The figures, released by the Office of National Statistics, reveal that the number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) in East Staffordshire dropped from 1,954 to 1,783 during June – a drop of 171.
This was a drop of 257 from the same point last year and means that 2.4 per cent of the East Staffordshire population are currently out of work – well below the Midlands and national average.
Burton MP Andrew Griffiths told the Mail the figures were ‘fantastically encouraging’ and said he was particularly pleased with a ‘big reduction’ in long-term youth unemployment.
He said: “I think the figures represent the increasing opportunities we are seeing among businesses locally.
“Unemployment is down in all categories but I am particularly delighted to see a big reduction in the number of long term unemployed young people which is an area I have been working hard on.
“There is a long way to go and work to do but I think the signs for the future are increasingly positive.”
In South Derbyshire, those claiming Job Seekers Allowance dropped from 1,185 to 1,098 – a fall of 87.
It means that just 1.8 per cent of the population in South Derbyshire is unemployed.
Compared to June last year, unemployment in South Derbyshire is down by 237.
Commenting on the labour market figures, Chris Plant, director of Burton and District Chamber, was cautiously optimistic.
He said: “With employment rising and unemployment falling, the labour market remains an area of strength for the UK economy.
“There are some areas of concern, however. Long-term unemployment is up, and youth unemployment, while edging down, is still too high.
“But at a time when the Government’s austerity plan remains in force and the public sector is shrinking, it is reassuring that the private sector is willing and able to create jobs.”