The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions came to the House of Commons to deliver the devastating news that poverty was on the rise to 3.7million people and a rise in child poverty in particular.
I raised how some wards in Delyn have a child poverty rate over 40% and how unemployment continues to rise/ The UK Government have not got a grip on this and are presiding over a disastrous work and pensions policy.
I am concerned by today’s unemployment figures that demonstrate that unemployment continues to rise in the constituency.
The total number of unemployed claimants in Delyn constituency in February 2019 was 1,170.
This represents a rate of 3.6% of the economically active population aged 16-64.
The equivalent UK claimant rate was 3.3%. The UK unemployment rate, which includes people not claiming benefits and is estimated from survey data, was 3.9% in November 2018 to January 2019. Read more “Unemployment: February 2019”
I am deeply concerned that unemployment in the constituency has continued to maintain momentum.
The total number of unemployed claimants in Delyn constituency in January 2019 was 1,130. That’s 20 higher than in December 2018 and sees the 30% increase in unemployment since December 2017 built upon and not decreased.
This represents a rate of 3.5% of the economically active population aged 16-64.
The equivalent UK claimant rate was 3.1%. The UK unemployment rate, which includes people not claiming benefits and is estimated from survey data, was 4.0% in October to December 2018.
The number of claimants in Delyn constituency is 255 higher than January 2018 and 40 higher than December 2018.
There were 240 claimants aged 18-24 in January 2019, 65 higher than January 2018.
During a recent Work and Pensions question time I asked the Secretary of State what she was going to do to stop the rise in unemployment. My question on that day came after manufacturing figures showed that the industry had shrunk -1.1% in the quarter. Our region is particularly reliant on manufacturing and a decline of this size will only ever mean job losses.
The Secretary of State dismissed my question at the time. A week later we now have the unemployment figures to demonstrate why the UK Government should be doing more to support constituencies like Delyn. We have a month-on-month increase in unemployment and a 30% rise over the year. This is because of an utter lack of interest by the UK Government into our economy.
Whilst the UK Government turns its back on us, Flintshire County Council and the Welsh Government are doubling their efforts. Either through expansion of council house building, investment in our local infrastructure or support for new businesses they are doing their utmost. We now need a UK Government to show they too believe in North Wales.
The economic growth figures out today demonstrated that growth slowed in the last three months to just 0.2%. Delving deeper into those figures we could see that construction shrunk by -0.3% and manufacturing -1.1%.
I pointed out to the Secretary of State that unemployment in Delyn has increased by 33% in the past 12 months and a no deal Brexit would turbo-charge that to levels unseen before.
The Secretary of State provided no answers as to what the Government was doing to support Delyn and North East Wales. She said she would be happy to hear my ideas. However, the Secretary of State ignored the fact that North Wales Labour MPs have been calling for funding for the North Wales Growth Deal, support for the Wylfa power plant, investment into the Colwyn Bay tidal lagoon and improvements in connectivity between North Wales and North West England. Each time the Government has decided to shrug its shoulders and place their money in the South East of England.