By Bob Burton
Friday, May 11, 2012
LETTERS From Mr Bob Burton, member of IW Trade Union Council, Shorwell:WE are rather intrigued by the comments made by Stuart Love, director of economy at the IW Council, in your report (CP, 04-05-12). He said the IW had failed to meet the criteria for assisted area status since 2000. We would be happy to know what the criteria is and respond to the IW Council accordingly.We have been extremely concerned with the continuing increasing numbers of unemployed people residing within the IW and the appalling waiting list of almost 6,000 people requiring social housing.As we have had no dialogue with the IW Council, we approached Andrew Turner MP with regard to the problem and its possible remedies. With his guidance, we made our views known to the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills about the problems facing the IW economy and business.If we consider the years from 1992 to 2008 and refer to the statistics, which are based on four-monthly cycles, it becomes noticeable there were only 19 times the number of unemployed fell below 2,000. A further 47 times showed unemployment ranging from 2.6 per cent to 11.9 per cent.March 2012 showed 3,886 people seeking Jobseekers’ Allowance. That was down from 4,086 from the previous month. That figure showed very little improvement if it was seasonally adjusted.Coupled with that, the figures of unemployment for the 16 to 24 age group is an additional 1,200 and likely to rise in July 2012 with further school leavers. Surely there is a case for government or European aid. The UK has contributed to the EU budget.We are aware the assisted area status map for 2014 to 2020 is in a consultation phase. That consultation finished on April 27. We had only two days to make a submission. Has the IW Council met that deadline? It is very noticeable the IW Council has done very little to alleviate unemployment. There are other areas within the UK with a similar situation that are receiving aid. Some of those are in the south east, with which we are grouped. There are more, as your report indicates, in Cornwall, which has a similar economy to that of the IW and is receiving EU aid.We can assure Mr Love the IW Trade Union Council is not going to go away until some tangible steps are taken to rectify the problems of unemployment. Perhaps the previous leader of the IW Council should not have pulled down the EU flag at County Hall. This is no time for factional interests we all need to work together!
Friday, June 14, 2013
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