Number of Sunderland people claiming out of work benefits rises

A Job Centre building.
A Job Centre building.

The number of people claiming out of work benefits in Sunderland has increased, according to the latest figures.

Statistics show that 5,710 people were in receipt of Jobseeker’s Allowance and unemployment Universal Credit in August, up from 5,610 in July. The figure in June stood at 5,785.

In the North East, the number of unemployed stood at 77,000, meaning six per cent of people in the region are currently without work.

The figure was up 8,000 on the previous quarter but down 20,000 overall year-on-year.

Minister for Employment, Damian Hinds said: “There’s good news in the North East where the number of people in work is 1.21 million close to a record high. Unemployment has fallen 20,000 on the year with the unemployment rate down 1.4% points.

"But there is more to do, and we will continue to build on our achievements through our employment programmes and the work of Jobcentre Plus."

Paul Carbert, policy adviser, North East England Chamber of Commerce said: "The latest figures released this morning show a small increase in unemployment in our region over the previous three months, but an increase in the employment rate over the past year.

"The North East has seen the greatest fall in unemployment of any region over the last 12 months. Although the recent results are not as positive as previous months, we are still in a much better place than we were a year ago.

"Our Quarterly Economic Survey for Q2 2017 has shown our members are positive about future workforce growth, and recruiting permanent, full time roles.”

Jackie Alderson, from Sunderland JobCentre, said: "It is good news in the North East.

"The number of people in work is 1.2million, which is close to a record high.

"There has been a slight dip in the last quarter, but we tend not to look at quarterly figures so much because of seasonal fluctuations.

"We are definitely pleased with where we are compared to last year.

"We will be launching a Twitter campaign and anybody looking for retail jobs will be able to follow us on the hashtag #bagsfullofjobs," said Jackie.

North East LEP Senior Economist Victoria Sutherland said: "The North East’s labour market performance across the year as a whole has been positive overall with more people in work and fewer unemployed.

"The decline in unemployment over the last year is the largest decline of all regions."