Brooks Newmark MP is MP for Braintree and a member of the Treasury Select Committee. Follow Brooks on Twitter
If we needed more proof that plan A is on track then this week’s labour market statistics are it. The latest figures show that employment continues to rise, with more men and women in work than ever before. Furthermore, unemployment is down by 24,000 for May-July 2013, and July’s revised fall of 36,300 is the biggest fall since June 1997. The Government’s economic plan is beginning to bear fruit; we have repaired the damage inflicted by 13 years of Labour’s financial mismanagement, and our economy has started to recover. As the Chancellor, George Osborne, has stated, our welfare reforms are helping more people into work, and inequality is falling.
Yet as we carry on towards economic renewal it is important we pay special attention to young people, especially as yesterday’s jobs market analysis reveals that whilst the unemployment figures continue to drop, youth unemployment has not been following the overall employment trend in the UK. There are 960,000 unemployed 16-24 year olds, which is around one in five who are in need of a job. A Manifesto published this week by the Million Jobs Campaign, of which I am a founder, seeks to address this problem. The Million Jobs Campaign was established to address the problem of youth unemployment, and our manifesto sets out five key policies that will help young people across Britain move into jobs:
1) Get rid of employer National Insurance Contributions for unemployed under 25s.
2) Make sure school pupils know all about apprenticeships.
3) Get rid of rules that stop employers from giving honest feedback.
4) Encourage more companies to take on a young person.
5) Help every young person to find a mentor.