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TUC warns over youth unemployment

Youth unemployment has increased in virtually every area of the UK in the past year and could soon hit a million, according to a new report.

A study by the TUC showed that the number of people jobless 18 to 24-year-olds rose in 196 of 202 local authorities in the year to September.

The only six local authorities where youth unemployment has stalled in the last year are Hillingdon, Kensington and Chelsea, Kingston upon Thames, Richmond upon Thames, Reading and Warwickshire.

Areas with the biggest increases in the number of young people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance between September 2010 and September 2011 included Hartlepool (up by 3.5%), Darlington (3.2%), Waltham Forest (3%), Sandwell (2.9%), and Doncaster, Torbay and Blackpool (all 2.7%).

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: "We're facing the biggest youth unemployment crisis in a generation with close to one million of our young people unable to find work.

"With the economic outlook the gloomiest it's been since the end of the recession, the bleak prospects facing young jobseekers look set to be with us for some considerable time to come, unless the Government changes course now and brings in immediate measures to support jobs and growth.

"Young people need particular help to make sure they don't spend long periods out of employment or education. We need a proper replacement for the Future Jobs Fund, new measures to support the creation of more apprenticeships and a Government commitment that no unemployed young person will spend more than six months out of employment or high-quality training.

"The Chancellor's plan A has already sent unemployment to a 17-year high. Our young people, and our whole country, urgently need a plan B to get people back into work and the economy back on its feet."

A Department for Work and Pensions spokesman said: "We are determined to ensure all young people have the chance of work which is why we are cutting the deficit to bring stability back to the economy, and promoting economic growth to create jobs for the long term.

"Our Work Programme offers tailored support to ensure young people get the help that's right for them to start the journey into work, while our work experience scheme is giving thousands of young people the chance to show an employer what they can do and get their feet on the ladder."


From Belfast Telegraph