Youth jobless levels on rise

UNEMPLOYMENT among 16-24 year-olds in Hastings has risen for a fifth month in a row.

Government figures released this week show another 62 young people registered for as unemployed in February.

This brought the total number to 3,553, second only in East Sussex to Brighton.

In September there were 3,120 claimants in Hastings.

In the last three months alone across East and West Sussex numbers have shot up by almost 2,700.

Mark Fround, chief executive of Sussex Enterprise, a chamber of commerce, said: “These figures are disappointing but unsurprising.

“Nationally youth unemployment has risen further and remains above one million.

“We urge the Chancellor to use next week’s budget to introduce measure that will allow businesses to create even more jobs. The government must ensure that the Youth Contract scheme works effectively and should scale up incentives for business to hire young people.

“Tax rises, like the business rates rise scheduled for April, should be scrapped to give employers confidence. Private sector jobs must be top of the agenda.”