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Wednesday, 17 February 2010

UK Unemployment Count - Deception !

17th February 2010

The number of people in the UK claiming Jobseeker's Allowance rose by 23,500 to 1.64 million in January, the largest increase since July last year.

Analysts had expected the number of claimants to fall by about 10,000.

The number of people unemployed in the UK has fallen slightly, figures show.

Total unemployment stood at 2.46 million for the three months to December, down 3,000 on the figure for the previous three months.

The rate of unemployment was unchanged at 7.8%, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

However, it's easy to reduce the claimant count if you suspend claimants benefits (kick them of benefits).

There are 44,000 people waiting for their appeals to be heard after having benefits (Employment Support Allowance, or ESA, is replacing Incapacity Benefit) stopped over the xmas period !!!

Seriously ill patients being told they are fit enough to work and denied benefit payments.

Two former doctors for the private healthcare company Atos, which carries out the medical assessments have expressed concerns that the checks are being done too quickly and that the system is biased towards declaring people fit for work.

Employment Support Allowance, or ESA, is replacing Incapacity Benefit. It's supposed to support the very sick, and as people get better, help them get back into the workplace.

The government said it wanted to get a million people back to work by 2015 but more that one year after introducing ESA, it says it can't measure how many people the scheme has got back into the workplace.

Trades Union Congress (TUC) Unemployed Workers Centres & Citizens Advice have been "flooded with complaints" about the new Employment Support Allowance (Esa) benefit.

Both organisations made the claim just over a year since the system replaced Incapacity Benefit and Income Support for people who are sick and disabled.

It said the system had caused "misery and frustration" for vulnerable people. During the investigation, we've heard claims that terminally ill patients are being told to attend back-to-work interviews while they apply for the new benefit.

We also heard concerns that the medicals are declaring seriously ill people as fit enough to go to work.

The public sector is expected to suffer big cuts later this year as whichever party forms the next government will need to begin the process of reducing the UK's £178bn budget deficit.

This could spark a second round of rising unemployment.

Work and Pensions Secretary Yvette Cooper said: "We know things are going to be tough for a while and we expect further increases in unemployment before the summer.

"That's why it's so important to increase help for people now, not cut it back."

She added that unemployment had been much lower than expected last year, partly because employees had been prepared to take pay cuts to stay in work.

The ONS figures showed that the number of 16 to 24-year-olds out of work fell over the three-month period between October and December, down to 923,000 from 936,000 in the previous three months.

Long-term unemployment, which covers those out of work for more than a year, increased by 37,000 in the quarter to December to 663,000, the highest figure since 1997.

Meanwhile, the number of workers in temporary jobs climbed to 1.434 million, up from 1.427 million in the previous three months.

The report also said 34.6% of people working on a temporary basis had said they had failed to find permanent work. This figure was up from 32.8%.

The number of men who said they had been forced to take temporary work rose by 9.2% from the previous quarter.

The percentage of people neither employed nor looking for work, and who are not counted as unemployed by the ONS, rose to 21.3%.

This group includes students, long-term sick or disabled people, the temporarily sick or injured, those who have had benefits stopped and people who have retired early or are looking after their family and home.

The goverenment & the tories point out that, this is the second consecutive month that the wider measure of unemployment has fallen.

Ask yourself "is it, or are claimants being kicked of benefits" up & down Britain those who are claiming benefits are being demonised and harrassed, blamed for unemploment - people are being forced into poverty and are turning to crime to survive .