Thousands more in work across the North East

Northumberland Gazette latest
Northumberland Gazette latest

The number of people claiming out-of-work benefits in Northumberland has dropped by two per cent year-on-year and 11 per cent among young people.

Figures released today show that 33,000 more people were in employment in the North East during the period November 2015 to January 2016 than during the previous quarter and 23,000 more compared to the same period last year.

During the same period, unemployment in the region dropped by 11,000, although this represented a hike year-on-year of 3,000.

In Northumberland, the claimant count for February this year was 4,915, a drop of two per cent on the previous year. For 18 to 24-year-olds, the decline was even more marked – 11 per cent.

However, the number of claimants in February was an increase compared to January.

Steve McCall, from Jobcentre Plus, said: “We are actively recruitng at the moment for the seasonal jobs that are available, like the Berwick holiday parks and Alnwick Castle and Garden. Easter being earlier has meant that activity has started earlier.”

On the figures, he added: “The trend has been moving in the right direction, but there’s still a challenge for people who need the skills or training and to make sure young people get the work experience they need. We are not going to rest on our laurels.”

And he assured people that there are jobs out there.

“A lot of the traditional, if you like, jobs are still there, everything from the care sector to the Army Reserve to the hospitality sector,” he said. “We have a good choice of sectors that are recruiting at the moment, including ourselves in Jobcentre Plus and HMRC (HM Revenue and Customs).”