Worcester MP Robin Walker has today welcomed the release of employment statistics showing unemployment continuing to fall in the city to near record lows of 1.5%.

The jobless figure for August in Worcester stands at 975 – 90 lower than the same time last year, and a 62% drop since 2010 when Robin was first elected MP. The youth unemployment rate also continues to fall, with 55 fewer claimants aged 18-24 than at the same point in 2016.

Nationally, there are now a record number of people in work, the highest level since records began in 1971. The increase is due to people of all ages finding work, with employment levels of those over 50 in work reaching a record high, youth unemployment falling by over 40% since 2010 and the proportion of young people who are unemployed and not in full-time education dropping below 5% for the first time.

These record figures have been driven by increases in full-time and permanent work. In the last year there has been a shift from part-time to full-time employment, 20,000 fewer people relying on zero hour contracts and full-time and permanent employment are both at a record high.

Today’s figures also show:

  • the employment rate is at a record high of 75.3%, with 32.14 million people now in work – an increase of 379,000 on the year
  • there are a near record 774,000 vacancies in the economy at any one time
  • the number of people in employment has increased by over 3 million since 2010
  • the female employment rate is at a record high of 70.8%, with over 15.1 million women in work
  • the UK has the third highest employment rate in the G7

Minister for Employment, Damian Hinds said:

“The strength of the economy is helping people of all ages find work, from someone starting their first job after leaving education, to those who might be starting a new career later in life.

“Britain’s employment success is largely about a growth in full-time and permanent work, as employers invest in Britain and offer quality job opportunities that put more money into people’s pockets.

“But there is more to do, and we will continue to build on our achievements through our employment programmes and the work of Jobcentre Plus.”

Commenting on the latest figures, Robin Walker said:

“I am really pleased to see the fall in unemployment continuing apace in Worcester, as it is across the UK. These figures show that employment prospects are improving across all job markets and for all those seeking work, from young people and those over 50, to lone parents – 68% of whom are now in work, a record high.”

“Locally there are some fantastic organisations helping people to gain the skills and confidence required to get back into work. On a recent visit to Worcester Community Trust I met with their Job Coach Mark Steadman, and was pleased to hear of his project work offering tailored 1-to-1 support to the long-term unemployed and those who have previously faced barriers to employment.”

“Among these latest figures I particularly welcome the increasing shift from part-time to full-time employment, with 20,000 fewer workers on zero hour contracts than at this time last year. As part of the Government’s commitment to delivering an economy that works for everyone, we will continue to foster the economic conditions necessary for high-quality, full-time employment to prosper.”


Notes to editors

For the latest employment statistics from the ONS, please see: https://www.nomisweb.co.uk/reports/lmp/wpca/1929380363/report.aspx#tabwab

For Robin’s previous statements on employment, please see:






For enquiries and appointments with Mark Steadman, please contact Worcester Community Trust at the Customer Services Hub on 01905 453453