In the most recent report released by the TUC, the UK is still fighting an uphill battle to get employment back on par to where it was before the recession hit in 2008 – 2009. Furthermore, they indicate that there is a wide disparity amongst regions in the UK and that the North East has the widest gap.
The latest figures released in April show that employment is down .5% from levels before the recession. TUC found that regions such as the London vicinity has employment levels up 3.3% (by 122,000 workers) but that employment was down in the West Midlands by 2.8% (70,000 workers) but in the East of England, London and the East Midlands, persons employed is actually higher than it was before the debt crisis struck.
Even though employment figures are a bit promising in some areas of the country, it appears as though it will be a good long while before the economy makes a recovery. General Secretary of TUC, Brendan Barber, is on record as saying employment had greater resilience than other sectors of the economy but men who work outside of London are faring the worst.
Another area of concern mentioned by Barber is the fact that employment for women is worse in almost all areas of the country, even though the figures look good. Again, there is a wide gap in employment for women as figures are down by 5.1% in the North East from pre-recession levels whilst employment for women in London is up by 4.3%.
For men, the largest gaps are in Humber and Yorkshire down by 4.3% whilst in London employment has seen an improvement of 2.5%. TUC is warning that there needs to be a major focus by government on closing the gap between regions so that employment is equitable.