Pirate FM News 3 minute read

Cornwall sees one of sharpest spikes in unemployment benefit claims in region

Cornwall sees one of sharpest spikes in unemployment benefit claims in region

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 10:00am 27th June 2020.

Cornwall has seen one of the sharpest spikes in people claiming unemployment benefits in the South West, new figures reveal.

The Labour Party and charities are calling for more support to stop people being pulled into poverty by the Covid-19 pandemic, after the number of claims more than doubled since the UK went into lockdown.

Office for National Statistics data shows 21,760 people were claiming out-of-work benefits in Cornwall as of May 14th, compared to just 8,870 in early March.

It means the share of the population signing on rose from 2.7% to 6.6% – among the biggest jumps in the South West, where the claimant rate rose from 2.3% to 5.4%.

The ONS figures count those aged 16 to 64 who are on Jobseekers Allowance and some Universal Credit claimants, with numbers rounded to the nearest five.

Across the UK, the claimant count more than doubled to 2.7 million on May 14th, with separate ONS figures showing the figure stood at 2.8 million for the whole month – the highest since 1993.

woman with money

The ONS cautioned that changes to Universal Credit in response to the virus mean more people could get unemployment-related benefits while still being employed, which could affect the figures.

Shadow chancellor Anneliese Dodds is calling for an urgent "back to work budget" to support jobs through the economic crisis brought about by the coronavirus.

“The Government was too slow to recognise the scale of the health crisis from coronavirus and we are already paying the economic price.

“The window is closing to protect existing jobs and encourage firms to invest in creating new ones."

Shadow chancellor, Anneliese Dodds

The ONS figures show the increase in the share of the population seeking help varied significantly around the country.

empty wallet

Anti-poverty charity the Joseph Rowntree Foundation said the Government should particularly focus on creating jobs in places that have seen the biggest increases in unemployment, and give people opportunities to gain new skills.

"Alongside this, the Government should also boost benefits so that people are not pulled into poverty if they lose their jobs."

Dave Innes, head of economics , Joseph Rowntree Foundation

Asked on Sky News about possible measures in an emergency budget, Chancellor Rishi Sunak said the priority was to drive the recovery by getting businesses open and people back to work.

"We've got to look forward and we set out an ambitious agenda at budget as well about investing in our regions, making sure we drive growth and productivity through infrastructure investment."

Rishi Sunak, Chancellor

You can find the source data here.

Contact Us

If you would like to submit a query or provide more information on this story please get in touch below.

Please wait...
  • Up to 3 JPG or PNG images, 2MB max size
  • We will always endeavour to credit you when we publish your pictures.
  • By uploading you are agreeing to this non-exclusive reuse, royalty-free, across all Pirate FM platforms, which extends to our partner broadcasters.
  • You retain copyright to all images.
  • If you would like to send us a video, please upload to YouTube or similar and paste the video URL into the message above.
Email Icon

Sign up for exclusive news, competitions and offers.
Proper Local News updates from Pirate FM

Suggested articles

One more death from coronavirus recorded in Cornwall

Cornwall News: The latest weekly figures have been published

Cornwall sees number of job vacancies plummet amid pandemic

Cornwall News: The figure is 42% lower than this time last year

Newer articles

South west's busiest rail routes revealed

Cornwall News: Two are in Cornwall - according to new research from GWR

NHS 111 calls in Cornwall increase as pressure eases on health service

Cornwall News: There's a huge drop in the average number of coronavirus symptoms being reported daily

Older articles

Lifeguard patrols expanding to more Cornish beaches

Cornwall News: A further twelve will get RNLI cover from this weekend

Two people come to the aid of a teenage robbery victim in St Austell

Cornwall News: The good samaritans stopped to help him after the attack

Most read

Body found in search for missing Camborne man

Cornwall News: James Mitchell, 41, has been missing since the beginning of last month.

Man dies after three-vehicle crash on the A38

Cornwall News: Police were called to the Glynn Valley but sadly he could not be saved

Pirate Extra Pirate 70s Escape LoveCornwall