Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown says UK jobs market is now a “jobs lottery.”

Odds of getting a job now worst in 50 years. Government have just “days” to act to stop jobs catastrophe.   

FORMER Prime Minister, Gordon Brown will tell Labour Party’s Connected Conference (Sept 22) that finding a job in Britain today now comes with lottery style odds of higher than 4000:1

Giving the Alliance For Full Employment(AFFE) which he has formed with Welsh First Minister, Mark Drakeford and England’s City Region Mayors its conference season launch, Mr Brown will reveal the shocking  jobs to job seeker ratios across Britain.

AFFE collated figures show there are now  

  • 15,000 people chasing 10 assembly operative jobs in Birmingham
  • 4,228 applicants for a trainee paralegal legal position in  London – 
  • 1000 people applied to be a receptionist at a restaurant in London 
  • 2154 applicants for an Administrator in Coventry  
  • 2653 applicants for an Assembly Operative position in Sunderland 
  • 2,932 applications to be warehouse worker in Northumberland  
  • 1,656 applicants to be an NHS 111 Call Handler, London

Referencing this research Mr Brown will say, “You’re almost as likely to win the National Lottery as this jobs lottery,”  describing them “as the worst odds against finding a job for fifty years”.
“This is not “the levelling up” that we were promised. It is unemployment up. Poverty Up. Deprivation Up. Homelessness Up ”  

And he will say these jobs seeker to job vacancy figures mean the “the government has to act in days” to enact an emergency jobs recovery programme or odds on finding a jib will become steeper yet. 

He will call  on the party members to join with him, the Metro Mayors, The Welsh First Minister and the 1500 Labour councillors ,70 Council Leaders, unions and employers to back the UK wide Alliance for Full Employment to send “a clear message that the government has days to extend the furlough to support full time or part time work in sectors and areas where we can’t yet return to work, guarantee work or education to all young people who need it.”   
Further AFFE figures show

  • 730,000 jobs were lost across the UK between March and July and there are now 1.4m unemployed and claiming benefits  
  • With another 7,500,000 facing redundancy after furlough ends on October 31st the prospects of gaining employment will diminish still further.   
  • Before the pandemic job vacancies were usually 500,000 plus – one for every two- three people unemployed   
  • Job vacancies now have fallen to 330,000 – lower than in the great recession that followed the financial crash just over a decade ago ,. 

Endorsing Mr Brown’s call for a change of direction,  AFFE  co -founder and Liverpool City Region Mayor, Steve Rotherham called on the government to change course: “You cannot build an economic recovery on mass unemployment.” Unite the Union General Secretary,  Len McLuskey said  “The time to act on jobs is now.  We are staring the danger of mass unemployment in the face and only urgent government action can prevent a jobs catastrophe.  I urge ministers to act on the AFFE agenda without delay.”

TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes said  “After a very brief flirtation with using the power of our state to protect livelihoods, the Tories have sadly returned to form and a jobs massacre is on its way unless they rapidly change course. 

“It can’t be lost on the British people that as France, Germany and Spain extend their job retention schemes to protect workers, Sunak and Johnson are about to cut the legs off millions of our citizens by allowing an unemployment bonanza to flourish.“We urgently need a policy rethink as the Alliance for Full Employment is rightly advocating. We can’t allow the government to create a jobs lottery for millions of our people. Time for Sunak and Johnson to recalibrate their response to an impending jobless calamity.”
Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard, said “These alarming figures, coming as we face the threat of the economy collapsing and unemployment rocketing, show just how vital it is that the goal of full employment is placed at the heart of policy making.”In Scotland, almost 350,000 workers are facing a furlough cliff-edge next month – and this could lead to long-term unemployment on a scale the people of Scotland have not seen in their lifetimes. “The real priority is about whether people are going to have jobs or not and as Scottish Labour leader I fully support this UK wide Alliance for Full Employment.”
AFFE’s seven demands to support full employment are 

  • Extended economic support – including furlough – for areas in  local lockdowns
  • Extending eligibility for and increasing the payment for households in  quarantine
  • A rescue plan for the High Street and Tourism, including support for part time work and extended VAT cuts
  • •A fully funded Youth Jobs Guarantee which covers recent education leavers
  • •A Green New Deal – emphasising domestic manufacturing and engineering and the   transition of the North Sea and other coastal waters to the Green Sea
  • •Regional growth funds supporting local industrial strategy by investing equity in the industries of the future & ensuring potential high-growth businesses are not prevented from investing in growth as a result of debt repayments
  • •Making the Bank of England responsible for low unemployment rates as well as low inflation
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