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Sittingbourne and Sheppey see jobless totals fall in figures released by the Office for National Statistics

By Lewis Dyson

Swale saw the third highest fall in unemployment in Kent as dole queues continue to shorten.

In June, the number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance in the borough dropped by 194 to 2,161.

Only Medway, where the number of jobseekers was down by 347 to 4,631, and Dover, where it dropped by 198 to 1,754, experienced bigger falls.

Across the county there were 1,880 fewer people on the benefit, bringing the total number of claimants to 22,894, according to the Office for National Statistics.

People on unemployment benefits has declined

Employment minister Esther McVey said: “An important milestone has been reached in our country’s recovery.

“With one of the highest employment rates ever, it’s clear that the Government’s long-term economic plan to help businesses create jobs and get people working again is the right one.”

Guy Nicholson, Labour prospective Parliamentary candidate for Sittingbourne and Sheppey, called the announcement, “a welcome fall” but went on to say: “Dig a little deeper though and you see all is not as good as it looks.

“Wages are almost static, average earnings have fallen way behind inflation, pay is only 0.3% higher than it was a year ago.

Labour's prospective parliamentary candidate for Sittingbourne and Sheppey, Guy Nicholson

“The number of people working part-time who want a full-time job has risen by more than 250,000 since 2010, and still we have too many young people with no job and no prospect of finding one.

“The recovery is being made at our expense. We are being turned into a low-wage, part-time economy with a few at the top walking off with the rewards of everyone else’s hard work.

“This race to the bottom is not how you build a growing and competitive economy.”

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