UNEMPLOYMENT in the UK sits around the 2.5 million mark, or 7.7% of the population fit for work. However, there are currently no more than 500,000 vacancies available for these people to fill.
It seems to me that there aren't enough jobs to go around.
While politicians hail the 0.7% economic growth forecast for the third quarter of this year as the beginning of the end for the bad times, they have been silent on where these extra two million jobs are going to come from.
Instead of developing a detailed job-creation strategy we have found ourselves in the surreal position where public representatives are systematically cutting back on public services, and public sector jobs, pay and pensions.
Young people are particularly impacted by unemployment. A recent report revealed that around 24,000 young people aged 18-24 are unemployed in Northern Ireland – equivalent to 23.8% of us.
It's clear that the scale of the problem is too big to be solved by half-measures; no amount of training programs, or apprenticeships, will substantially improve our predicament. Stormont should begin the creation of decent new jobs now.
Perhaps, with Stormont and Westminster elections on the horizon, it's time for us to start asking some clear and insistent questions of our politicians.
Gracehill, Co Antrim