Commenting on the latest set of labour market statistics for Scotland, Grahame Smith, Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) General Secretary said:
“The fall in unemployment over the quarter to February is to be welcomed but it must be noted that, for the second month in a row, unemployment rose in the last month under report.
“As usual, the headline statistics do not begin to tell the full story: too many people can’t find the full-time, permanent employment that they need to make ends meet, long-term unemployment is stagnant or rising on most measures and there has been another significant rise in the number of young people out of work for over 6 months. The claimants to vacancies ratio is over 7:1 across Scotland and much higher in some local authority areas.
“With real wages falling at the fastest pace since the 1920s, real household incomes falling for the first time in thirty years and with the bulk of the Coalition’s spending cuts yet to be implemented, it is very difficult to envisage a sustainable demand led recovery becoming embedded at any point.
“Unfortunately high unemployment, with all the social and economic costs it entails, looks to be a fact of life for the duration of this Parliament and very possibly beyond”.
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