Steve McCabe, MP for Birmingham Selly Oak, has urged the government to get on with targeted job creation as unemployment continues to rise in his constituency.
Figures released yesterday show 7.6% of people in Selly Oak Constituency were claiming unemployment benefits as of August 2020, considerably higher than the national average of 6.5%. The number claiming unemployment benefits in Birmingham, Selly Oak has increased by 2,135 since lockdown began in March and increased again by 215 since last month. The rise in youth unemployment is also very concerning, 22% of those claiming some type of benefit were aged 16-24.
The Trussell Trust have raised concerns about spiralling unemployment on poverty levels, they estimate 846,000 food parcels will be distributed in October to December this year. Charities are warning a new wave of people are falling into poverty following the pandemic.
Steve McCabe has previously raised concerns about the lack of targeted support available for areas with existing unemployment problems such as Birmingham. Through his role on the Work and Pensions Select Committee he has been looking into how the pandemic has impacted young people’s job opportunities and scrutinising Government plans for jobs.
He is keen to work with local JobCentres and businesses to ensure the Kickstart scheme, aimed at tackling youth unemployment, reaches hard-hit areas of his constituency. He will be working in Parliament to push the Government to deliver on their promise to deliver new job opportunities across the UK.
Steve McCabe MP said:
“With poverty and foodbank use expected to spike following the pandemic, the Government needs to take action on their promise to tackle unemployment. While I welcome the new Kickstart scheme, the Government have been slow to release details on how this will be targeted to support areas with high unemployment, such as Birmingham – Selly Oak, where unemployment is climbing month on month.
“I will continue to work with local JobCentres and businesses to ensure the Kickstart scheme brings work here”