CWU deplores worsening job figures
15th February 2012
UK unemployment went up by 48,000 to 2.67 million in the three months to December, taking it to 8.4%, the highest figure for 16 years. The number of young people without a job rose 22,000 to 1.04m, taking the unemployment rate for 16 to 24-year-olds to 22.2%.
CWU general secretary Billy Hayes
said: "CWU members don't need to be told how bad this is
- many of them are experiencing the reality of this deeply
depressing news. Yesterday we had the devastating announcement by
call centre group HCL that it is closing its Armagh site and
cutting 255 jobs in Northern Ireland. The outsourcing company has
another site in Belfast which is also expected to suffer job
"At the same time, nearly 450 workers are set to lose their jobs in Liverpool because of Virgin Media's plan to close its Albert Dock call centre.
"This comes at a time when inflation, despite yesterday's fall, is still at 3.6%, meaning that prices are increasing at almost twice the rate of wages. For millions of people things are still getting worse with bills rising and incomes failing to keep pace.
"We will fight every step of the way to reverse these job losses and to protect our members from the widespread erosion on their standard of living."
TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber noted that the unemployment figures are not quite as bad as at the end of last year but said: "We desperately need more full-time jobs paying decent wages."