THE NUMBER of people on Universal Credit and looking for work in Redditch has leapt by 1,914 to 3,399 in the past year, according to the latest figures from the Department for Work and Pensions.
The 129 per cent rise is closely mirrored by the increase in 19 to 24-year-olds out of work which has risen by 340 to 619 since January 2020.
It’s a story reflected across the county in the past 12 months as the country was battered by Covid-19.
In Bromsgrove, the number of 18 to 24-year-olds claiming and looking for work has grown by 148 per cent, an increase of 300 to 503, while the total number of claimants has reached 2,716, up 1,557, an increase of 134 per cent.
In terms of percentages, Wychavon has fared worse, 18 to 24 years looking for work increasing by 211 per cent or 461 to 680, while the total number out of work has reached 3,405, up 2,034, a rise of 148 per cent.
In Worcester the total figures are the worst in the county, the total number of people on Universal Credit and looking for work standing at 3,723, an increase of 1,964 over the same time last year, an increase of 112 per cent.
For 18 to 24-year-olds in the city, the increase is 431 to 720, a rise of 149 per cent.
A spokesperson for the county’s Job Centres said: “These are unprecedented times and all our work coaches are working incredibly hard to offer tailored provision job support schemes.
“We are also pushing our sector-based work academies while the government’s Kickstart programme has had a positive response from employers.
“With the road map out of Covid now published, the hospitality sector is sure to be looking at reopening.”