More than one in five households in the North are entirely unemployed, new figures have revealed.
According to the Office for National Statistics, 21.2% of homes in the region don’t contain any adults who are in work and are therefore classed as workless.
This is the equivalent of 186,000 households, according to the latest figures, which were correct as of the end of last year.
No other English region has a higher rate of workless households than the North East and only Northern Ireland has a higher rate outside of England.
The proportion of homes in the in the region that are considered as workless is usually comparatively high and has actually fallen by 3.2% since 2010.
Just over half of North East households (54.7%) have all adults in employment while in 24.2% some adults are in employment while others are not.
In England as a whole , 15.2% of households contain no employed adults and are therefore classed as workless. This is a drop of 3.1% compared to 2010.
The figure has dropped from just under 3.9 million between October to December 2010 to around 3.3 million in the same quarter last year, figures which have been hailed by the Government.
Ministers said the latest figure was the lowest in a decade, adding that 372,000 fewer children were living in a household where no-one has a job.
Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith said:
“The primary aim of our welfare reforms has been to support everyone who is able to work into jobs.
“To give people the skills as well as the opportunities to be part of the economic recovery. And we’ve seen remarkable success – with an average of 1,000 more people in work for every single day that this Government has been in power. In total, 1.9 million more people with the self-esteem and financial security that a job brings.
> Low pay, short hours or zero hours contracts do not equal financial security, and I would guess they do little to generate self-esteem either.
Not to mention the fact that twice as much is spent on in-work benefits (ie: to boost low wages) than on unemployment.
And the little matter of many of those hard-working families so beloved of politicians having to access food banks in order to survive.
“Today’s figures reveal that the number of workless households has fallen by over 600,000 under this Government.
“Most significantly, there are 272,000 fewer households living in social housing without work, and the proportion in social housing where someone does now work with a breadwinner and a role model, is the highest since records began.
“Behind these figures are countless stories of hard work and determination. By sticking to our long-term economic plan our welfare reforms are transforming the lives of some of the poorest families in our communities.”
> Well, that’s true, at least. But transforming lives for the worse wasn’t really what we had in mind…
Source – Sunday Sun, 29 Mar 2015