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Job Seekers Allowance claimants increase in North Devon and Torridge

PUBLISHED: 08:30 20 February 2014

Ilfracombe has seen a 150 per cent rise in unemployment, according to figures.

Ilfracombe has seen a 150 per cent rise in unemployment, according to figures.

Archant

Number of claimants rises above December’s figures - but show a year-on-year decrease compared with January 2013.

THE number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance has increased through January in North Devon and Torridge.

The latest figures show North Devon claimants increased by 5.9 per cent and Torridge claimants increased by 3.1 per cent – the lowest in the county.

This increase mirrors a trend in UK figures which saw JSA claimants rise by 3.1 per cent since December last year.

But the amount of people claiming across the whole of Devon – just 1.6 per cent of the working age population – is still well below the national percentage figure.

And year-on-year, the amount of JSA claimants in the county has decreased by 28.1 per cent.

Cllr Andrew Leadbetter, Devon County Council’s Cabinet member with responsibility for economy and growth said: “Devon County Council, the Heart of the South West LEP and other partners, are working to ensure that parts of the county most in need are included in the latest draft of the Government’s Assisted Areas map.

“These latest JSA figures for Devon, which are unwelcome but not unexpected, help to support that work.

“This work will enable manufacturing businesses to access more generous levels of government funding to drive innovation and employment growth.”

The latest figures also show claimants aged 24 and under have also increased slightly since December by 70 people.

Cllr Leadbetter added: “Addressing youth unemployment in our county remains a key priority for the council, and these figures clearly demonstrate the need for events like our apprenticeships themed ‘business breakfast’ for employers, and information fair for young people next month, as part of National Apprenticeship Week.

“The work we are doing around training and skills for Devon’s young people will help to ensure Devon’s young people are able to find employment.”

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