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Jobless figures rise across county

The number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance has risen in Lancashire despite nationwide falls

The number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance has risen in Lancashire despite nationwide falls

 

The number of people out of work in Lancashire rose by more than 800 claimants last month.

Figures published on Wednesday showed 23,470 were registered to claim Jobseeker’s Allowance in the county in January compared with 22,638 the previous month.

The figure excludes Blackburn with Darwen which saw a rise of 96 claimants to 4,366, and Blackpool where the claimant count rose 130 to 6,226.

In Preston, 3,302 people were registered to claim Jobseeker’s Allowance in the city in January compared with 3,144 the previous month.

The statistic equates to 4.4 per cent of the working population.

In neighbouring South Ribble, the figures rose by 154 claimants from 1,461 to 1,615 with Chorley seeing a hike of 139 claimants up to a total of 1,839.

The figures came against national Jobseekers’ Allowance claimant figures hitting a two-year low while the number of people in work at the end of 2012 rose to almost 30 million, the highest since records began in 1971.

Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan-Smith said: “The fall in long-term unemployment is particularly welcome and shows that the training and support we are offering is helping people move off benefits and into work.

“These figures show another big increase in full-time jobs, half a million more British people in work over the past year and more women in employment than ever before.

“The UK is now ahead of many of its international rivals when it comes to cutting unemployment and creating jobs which is so important as we compete in a global race.”

Shadow work and pensions secretary Liam Byrne said: “The fall in the headline rate of unemployment is welcome but it is now clearer than ever that British workers are paying the price to get a job or keep a job.

“People have now taken an average £1,200 pay cut since the election because jobs are so hard to come by and today we see there’s still more than five people chasing every vacancy.

“Youth unemployment has risen yet again, back towards the million mark, the number of women out of work has gone up and long-term unemployment is still far too high.”

In Wyre, the claimant count rose to 1,725 in January from 1,652 in December, Fylde rose from 1,032 to 1,051 and Lancaster saw a rise to 2,821, an increase of 87 claimants.

West Lancashire rose to 2,359 claimants from 2,272 with Ribble Valley the lowest in the area with 508 claiming the benefit, an increase of just 11 on December’s totals.

 

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