South West sees biggest increase in over 50s struggling to find work

World News

MPs are being urged to back Labour’s plans to reform job support ahead of the Opposition Day Debate as recent research shows a stark increase in over-50s across the country who are either struggling to find or go back to work since the COVID-19 pandemic. However, some areas are populated with more economically inactive Britons than others.

Commenting on the proposed reforms, Jonathan Ashworth, shadow work and pensions secretary, said: “We’re wasting the talents of so many people across the country who are desperate for quality work”, before adding that a “generation of over-50s in every part of the country have been given no help”.

He continued: “MPs must back our welfare reform plans to get Britain back to work, raise living standards and target the highest growth in the G7.”

Analysis from the Labour Party, released today, shows that every part of the UK saw a rise in the number of over-50s who are economically inactive between March 2020 and September 2022 – with an overall increase of almost 350,000 (11 percent).

The South West saw the greatest increase in economic inactivity among the over-50s at 16 percent, followed by the East Midlands, West Midlands and North West, which each saw a rise of 15 percent.

The research shows the number of economically inactive men between the ages of 50 and 64 had increased by almost a quarter (23 percent) in the North West and the West Midlands and by more than a fifth (21 percent) in the East Midlands.

The South West saw the greatest increase in the number of economically inactive women between the ages of 50 and 64 at 17 percent, followed by the North East on 15 percent.

UK unemployment rises to 3.7% as wages increase at record rate [ANALYSIS]
Shameless young woman scams her own grandfather out of £75,000 [INSIGHT]
Woman shares ‘low-effort’ method that helped save £20,000 in 3 years [EXPLAINED]

A total of 55,000 more men over 50 are economically inactive across the North, while 50,000 more women over 50 are economically inactive across the South.

According to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) recent economic labour market report published in September, being sick, injured or disabled continues to be the main reason why people aged between 50 and 64 years are economically inactive in the labour market (39.1 percent, or 1.4 million).

Nearly 760,000 people aged between 50 and 64 years are either actively seeking work, or are inactive but are willing or would like to work.

The Participation Gap report, published by the Learning and Work Institute found that out of 10 countries studied, the UK is the only country analysed to see significant falls in economic activity rates for people aged 55 to 64.

According to the report, rates have virtually reverted back to pre-pandemic levels in Germany, Italy, the US and Canada, for instance, and have risen in Spain, the Netherlands, Japan and Australia.

Stephen Evans, the author of the report, said: “We currently have crunches in recruitment and labour market participation.

“Employers and the Government need to find ways to support people back into the labour market – growing supply rather than putting the brakes on a smaller, overheated economy.

“We need a renewed plan for jobs, skills and growth that works with employers to find new ways to engage and support people into the labour market.”

Ministers are now being called to “get Britain back to work” by reforming disability benefit assessments, devolving employment support to local areas and providing specialist and targeted help for those with long-term ill health and the over-50s.

Source: Read Full Article