STUC on labour market statistics

April 12th 2017

Commenting on the latest unemployment figures Grahame Smith Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) General Secretary said:

“Headline falls in unemployment are often held up to be a positive news story. Unfortunately the focus on this measure masks the underlying weakness of the economy.

“Unemployment may be falling but inactivity is rising, up by 59,000 across the year. Too many jobs are precarious and the number of those in part-time work but needing more hours remains high. Real wages are also stagnating, partly as a consequence of the Scottish and UK Governments maintaining a 1% public sector pay cap. Low pay, added to increased inflation, mean that many households are once again feeling the pinch.

“As recent figures show, poverty is rising and growth in the Scottish economy is close to zero. It is increasingly clear that urgent action is needed to reverse the decline in real wages, to boost confidence and activity in the Scottish economy and ensure workers can support themselves and their families.”

ENDS

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