The headline that “Unemployment is Falling” is not a reality for some of the unemployed in the Bridgwater and West Somerset Constituency. Close analysis of the figures show that for those 18-24 year olds claiming job seekers allowance, there has been an increase from 85 to 95 since May 2010. For 24 year olds and under claiming JSA up to12 months, the increase is from 15 to 50. For those over 25 claiming JSA over 12 months the increase is from 175 to 210, since May 2010.
Cllr Mick Lerry said: “For those people in work wages are not even keeping pace with inflation. According to the TUC UK workers are suffering the longest and most severe decline in real earnings since records began in Victorian times, according to a new analysis published by the TUC. This year, workers across the UK face the seventh consecutive year of falling real earnings – a situation that has no historical precedent, says the TUC. Even the pay squeeze of the long depression of the 1920s was shorter. The total decline in earnings since 2007 is over eight per cent, according to the TUC analysis.”
“This coming Saturday many people and trade unionists will be marching for a Pay Rise as part of the TUC campaign. Many workers have seen their pay decline at a time when the Government is saying: “We are all in this together”, said Mick.
Pay falling far behind cost of living
Rachel Reeves MP, Labour’s Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, responding to today’s Labour Market Statistics, said:
“Today’s fall in overall unemployment is welcome, but the new figures show working people are continuing to see their pay fall far behind the cost-of-living.
Working people have seen their real wages fall by over £1,600 a year since 2010. The Government’s failure to act on low pay has led to millions of people struggling to get by, huge additional costs in Housing Benefit and Tax Credits paid to those in work, and the OBR warning about the impact on the public finances”.
“That’s why Chuka Umunna and I will call on the Government to adopt Labour’s plan to raise the national minimum wage to £8 during a debate in Parliament on low pay later today. This is an important part of Labour’s economic plan to tackle the cost-of-living crisis and ensure we earn our way to higher living standards for all, not just a few at the top,” said Rachel.
“People in the Bridgwater and West Somerset Constituency should ask Ian Liddell – Grainger MP will he be voting with Labour, regarding the debate on the Minimum Wage” said Mick.
Cllr Mick Lerry – Leader of the Labour Group in Bridgwater and West Somerset
Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Bridgwater and West Somerset.