Doom and gloom on jobs front

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MORE than 11,000 workers lost their jobs in three months in Wearside and the North East as the region bears the brunt of the economic crisis.

 Unions have described the latest unemployment figures as “soul-destroying”, with data released yesterday showing the region’s unemployment brought the total to 153,000, or a jobless rate of 12 per cent.

 Nationally, unemployment hit a 17-year high after a 118,000 increase in the jobless total, with a record number of young people out of work.

 Kevin Rowan, regional secretary of the Northern TUC, said: “It is soul-destroying to see the continued rise of people out of work in our region, month on month and quarter on quarter. The North East is easily retaining the unfortunate mantle of the region with the highest unemployment in the country, at a desperate 12 per cent.

 “With a total of 153,000 people unemployed, and nearly 22 job seekers per vacancy in parts of the North East, this is fast becoming a crisis that is touching each and every household.”

 Labour leader Ed Miliband said the PM’s “boasts about rising employment” showed “how out of touch he is”.

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