Job-creating levers urgently needed, says Plaid Cymru

Carmarthenshire affected by unemployment rise

Plaid Cymru representatives for the Carmarthen East & Dinefwr constituency, Jonathan Edwards MP and Rhodri Glyn Thomas AM respond to the latest disappointing unemployment figures by continuing their call for devolution of job creating levers to the Wales and for the Welsh Government to stop sleeping on the job.

Latest unemployment figures show that the number of people unemployed in the UK rose by 80,000 to 2.51 million in the three months to July, representing the largest increase in nearly two years according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Youth unemployment also rose from 78,000 to 973,000.

The total claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance rose by 20,300 in August to 1.58 million.
In Wales, the number of unemployed has increased by 7,000 in the past three month. Specifically within the Carmarthen East & Dinefwr constituency, the number of unemployed claimants in August 2011 was 1,133. The represents an increase of 126 since August 2010 and is the same number of July 2011.

In a joint statement, Mr. Edwards and Mr. Thomas said that no area in Wales is immune to the policies of the Tories and Lib Dems, and that governments at both ends of the M4 must wake up to the serious challenge ahead of them to increase growth in the economy instead of growth in unemployment.

The elected representatives said:

“Since the Westminster election, we have warned that Carmarthenshire’s economy would be exposed to the cuts of the Conservatives and Lib Dems as we have a proportionally high amount of employment within the public sector.

“The UK Government has continued with its bulldozer approach to cutting budgets and, as a consequence, the number of those unemployed within our constituency has increased by almost 130 since this time last year, and has been stagnant since last month.

“The Welsh Government fairs no better as unemployment in Wales has risen by 7000 on Labour’s watch. Contrast this with Scotland which has seen unemployment fall by 3000. Whilst the Scottish Government has been getting on with the job, Labour here in Wales has completely failed to bring forward any ideas for job creation.

“The people of Wales were promised a ‘no-excuses’ culture following the referendum on the National Assembly’s law-making powers. Labour has broken that promise with the Welsh people.

“The devolution of meaningful job creation levers would go some way in assisting Wales to weather the storm exacerbated by poor Tory and Lib Dem policies.

“How high has unemployment got to be before the three London parties comprehend the seriousness of their actions – or lack of, in the case of Labour – and look to the growth opportunities Plaid Cymru has already put forward, such as our Build4Wales proposal, to get our economy moving and people back into work?”

ENDS

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