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Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Strat­ton Wil­liams

The num­ber of peo­ple claim­ing Job Seek­ers Al­lowance in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang has fallen dra­mat­i­cally, new fig­ures show.

The num­ber of Job Seek­ers Al­lowance claimants has fallen by 33 per cent across the two towns in the past year.

The num­ber of peo­ple claim­ing Job Seek­ers Al­lowance in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang has fallen dra­mat­i­cally, new fig­ures show.

The lat­est Depart­ment for Work and Pen­sions re­port shows that in Novem­ber 2014 the num­ber claim­ing JSA in both ar­eas was 1109.

In Novem­ber 2015 that fig­ure has plunged to 747 across both ar­eas. That rep­re­sents a drop of 33 per cent. The big­gest in­di­vid­ual im­prove­ment was in Cam­bus­lang West.

JSA claimants there fell from 278 in 2014 to 174 this year – a drop of al­most 38 per cent.

Ruther­glen Cen­tral and North also showed a huge plunge in claimant num­bers.

Fig­ures there for 2014 showed 306 on the ben­e­fit com­pared with 195 this year – a 36 per cent fall.

The im­proved sta­tis­tics con­tin­ued in Ruther­glen South with a near 34 per cent re­duc­tion in JSA claims.

Last year, in that area, 268 peo­ple were awarded the al­lowance while in 2015 the num­ber fell to 177.

Poor­est per­form­ing area in the lat­est re­port was Cam­bus­lang East – which still showed an im­prove­ment of al­most 22 per cent.

In 2014 there were 257 on JSA while this year the num­ber dropped to 201.

Th­ese lat­est labour mar­ket sta­tis­tics were pro­vided by Nomis (Na­tional On­line Man­age­ment In­for­ma­tion Sys­tem) for the Depart­ment for Work and Pen­sions (DWP).

The stats also show that across South La­nark­shire as a whole there were 5413 JSA claimants in Novem­ber 2014 with 3837 awards at the same point in 2015.

This shows an over­all drop in the re­gion of al­most 30 per cent.

Some ob­servers spec­u­lated that the in­tro­duc­tion of Univer­sal Credit by the UK Gov­ern­ment may have been a fac­tor in driv­ing down the num­ber of JSA claims.

But Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang only adopted Univer­sal Credit in Oco­to­ber this year, so it would seem too short a timescale to have af­fected the fig­ures, DWP ex­perts say.

Mar­garet Fer­rier MP for Ruther­glen and Hamil­ton West said: “I wel­come the fur­ther fall in un­em­ploy­ment in my con­stituency. The gen­eral down­ward trend in job­less­ness is both wel­come, and some­thing I will work to see con­tinue.

“The SNP is com­mit­ted to help­ing Scot­land’s en­trepreneurs start their own busi­nesses and is sup­port­ing al­most 100,000 of them with re­duced or re­moved rates through the Small Busi­ness Bonus Scheme.

“There are now 90,000 new busi­nesses in Scot­land since the SNP took charge in 2007.

“Scot­tish cities are now out­per­form­ing Lon­don in terms of new busi­ness growth.

“I want to see the con­tin­ued cre­ation of long-term and sus­tain­able em­ploy­ment, and for un­em­ploy­ment rates to tum­ble fur­ther,” said the SNP mem­ber.

Labour MSP James Kelly, how­ever, had some reser­va­tions about the lat­est fig­ures.

“Al­though the num­ber of JSA claimants has come down, I re­main greatly con­cerned about the lack of skilled and well-paid jobs in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang,” he said.

“In ad­di­tion, there are many in em­ploy­ment who are not be­ing paid the Liv­ing Wage.

“More skilled and well-paid jobs will not only help in­di­vid­ual fam­i­lies but it will also help boost growth in our lo­cal area,” Mr Kelly added.

I wel­come the fur­ther fall in un­em­ploy­ment in my con­stituency

Big fall JSA claims are down at Job Cen­tres

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