Youth unemployment trebles in 12 months

Peter Lewin, aged 21, from Intake.
Peter Lewin, aged 21, from Intake.

SHOCKING figures have revealed that the number of jobless youngsters in Doncaster has trebled - in just a year.

New Government statistics make for grim reading for young people who are receiving their GCSE and A-Level results after it was revealed in July 2011 that the number of 18 to 24-year-olds claiming jobseekers allowance for more than 12 months was 175 - but by last month, that lept to 590.

The largest number of unemployed young people was in Doncaster Central - where the number had risen from 70 to 220.

In Doncaster North, the figure has risen from 65 to 215, while in Don Valley it increased from 40 to 155.

Over the same period, the total number of unemployed people across the borough went up from 10,008 to 10,814.

Young jobless people visiting Doncaster’s Job Centre in Wood Street want action.

Peter Lewin, 21, from Intake, has been unemployed since 2010.

He said: “It is so difficult. There seem to be a lot of companies that want applications on the internet, and that makes it more difficult for you if you don’t have a computer.

“I’ve put in loads of applications but in most cases, they haven’t got back to me. It does my head in.

“I’m starting a scheme through the Job Centre in which I will work as a volunteer.

“It is upsetting to be in this position. I just want a job.”

Beth Temperton, aged 20, of Balby, has been out of work for eight months after losing her job at Cooplands in Doncaster town centre.

She said: “It’s depressing, and it does get to you. I have nothing to do because I have no money and I have no work. All I can do is try to find work, but there is so little out there.”

Danny Abell, 21, from Warmsworth, lost his temporary warehouse job with Asda Wincanton six months ago.

He said: “It is hard - people say you need experience, but you can’t get a job to get that experience.

“I don’t think people realise how much of a problem unemployment for my age group is, or they would be doing more about it.”

Yasmin Dutton, aged 18, from Wheatley, has recently become unemployed, adding: “I’m just fed up, because I can’t find anything now. Everyone is asking for experienced workers but I have not got the experience they want.”

Doncaster has seen a string of job losses over the last year, including more than 700 at the council.

A spokesman for the Department for Work and Pensions said that over the next three years a scheme called the Youth Contract will offer nearly 500,000 training opportunities for young people.

• See this week’s Doncaster Free Press for more on our campaign to help people back into work.