Youth unemployment in South Tyneside has increased for the second month in a row, latest figures have revealed.
The total number of people aged 18 to 24 claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) in September was 1,230, compared with 1,165 in August.
This followed a steady fall in youth unemployment in the borough in previous months.
However, a labour expert revealed that the JSA count among young jobseekers in South Shields is 30 per cent down on the same period in 2013, and predicted seasonal and general employment opportunities will see youth employment falling in South Tyneside.
The total claimant count for JSA across the borough has remained largely unchanged, at 4,545 last month, compared with the August figure of 4,547.
A total of 2,875 men and 1,670 women are now unemployed and claiming benefits in South Tyneside.
The percentage of the local working age population who claimed benefits remained unchanged at 4.8 per cent.
Steve McCall, employment engagement manager for the Department for Work and Pensions and Jobcentre Plus, based in Newcastle, said:
“There are hundreds of jobs out there and employers are wanting to recruit, particularly in contact centres and in retail.
> Yes, I saw one today – working in the stores at South Shields’ Next store – 10 hours a week. Who is that any good to ?
Take all these short hours and zero hours jobs out of the equastion and what’s left ?
“I would hope the overall jobless figure in South Tyneside will continue to come down and employers are coming to us with more confidence and requesting help with vacancies.
“The JSA count in South Shields is down 30 per cent on the same period last year and with the Youth Contract and seasonal work, I would expect that figure to fall.”
Mr McCall added that while there is traditionally a spike in youth unemployment after the festive period, he said more employers are seeking to retain temporary staff.
Coun John Anglin, lead member for regeneration and economy at South Tyneside Council, said:
“The number of people claiming Job Seekers’ Allowance has fallen again, as it has done every month this year. This is great news, but we will continue to work hard to reduce it further.
“We’ve seen a slight rise in youth unemployment, which is reflective of seasonal variations due to school leavers and university holidays.”
Source – Shields Gazette, 16 Oct 2014