unemployment - record number not working


No fewer than 7.9 million people in Britain are now "economically inactive". This is the highest figure ever recorded, and equates to 21.5% of people of working age (16-65). 2.1 million of them want work. The big rise in the numbers of newly "economically inactive" workers is not due to there being more carers, or more single mums - it is because more people of all ages are without work.

This puts a different perspective on government boasts about the ever-diminishing level of unemployment. Even the official figure is now 1.41 million - which we would all have seen as scandalously high any time between 1945 and the advent of Thatcherism in 1979.