“Sounds like a step in the right direction. So glad we now have a ‘can-do’ council in Birmingham.”
(tweet from @gogwit to @politicsinbrum, 8 August 2012CE at 1809)
I’ll stand by that. It has been fashionable for those in power, particularly over the past quarter-century, to wring their hands, shrug their shoulders and pass unemployment off as inevitable and dismiss the ideal of full employment as a naïve pipe dream. It gives me inordinate pleasure to hear our elected representatives talk again of “eradication” of long-term unemployment as a worthy and worthwhile aspiration. For socialists it must always be an aim, for it is a cornerstone of the *real* big society, the one wherein all contribute according to their means, be it by hand, or by brain, or both, for the benefit of all.
Birmingham has real issues with youth unemployment, with over 2,500 young people long term unemployed in the city, with inner-city wards reporting as much as 40% rates of long term unemployment amongst young people (long term unemployment is defined as more than 6 months out of work).
Nationally, there are over 1 million young unemployed people, a figure that has risen sharply in the past few years, as school leavers face the worse economic conditions since the great depression, and extreme competition for jobs – earlier this year, when Jaguar expanded their Solihull operations, they had 20,000 applications for…
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