Commenting on news that unemployment in the UK in the three months to September jumped by 140,000 to 1.82 million – the highest in 11 years, and that the so-called claimant count – those claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance – has now increased for nine months in a row and is 154,800 higher than a year ago, the SNP have called on the UK Government to take urgent and widespread action.
SNP Westminster Treasury spokesperson, Stewart Hosie MP, said:
“The reality of recession is really biting, and with unemployment reaching its highest level since 1997 it is crucial that the UK Government take urgent action to counter redundancies, rising costs and repossessions.
”The Scottish Government is doing everything within its powers by delivering a six-point plan to help families and business. The UK Government must do the same.
”We need to reflate the economy by tackling rising household costs particularly soaring energy and fuel costs, and to help businesses, which are the lifeblood of the economy, grow us out of recession.
”Businesses must be able to keep more of the money they earn to absorb costs and to protect and preserve jobs, and there must also be parallel increases in public spending to stimulate demand in key sectors such as construction.
“And any new borrowing should not be spent solely on tax reductions. Additional public spending is also needed to stimulate growth. And that is why the UK Government should lift unfair Treasury controls and release the billion pounds of spending due to Scotland – including the Scottish Government’s own underspend and Scotland’s Fossil Fuel Levy.
“When you have exceptional circumstances, substantive actions are needed at every level to provide stimulus and boost economic demand. We must pull together and use our resources to the fullest extent and to the maximum benefit for the Scottish economy.”