From bad to worse

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GREEN shoots of employment in Eastwood may be far from a reality, according to recent figures by the office of national statistics.

East Renfrewshire MP Jim Murphy believes the new data is a cause for serious concern, with almost 40 people chasing each job in some areas.

Unemployment benefit claimants have also dramatically increased in most areas of Eastwood.

The figure has more than doubled in Giffnock and Thornliebank (from 77 in 2007 to 171 this year) while in Neilston, Uplawmoor and Newton Mearns North, there are now a total of 253 claiming benefits, as opposed to just 133 in 2007.

In Busby , Clarkston and Eaglesham there are just four vacancies for 151 claimants — meaning 38 people chase each local job.

And in Netherlee, Stamperland and Williamwood, there are 13 job seekers per vacancy.

Mr Murphy believes these figures are a result of a lack of government action.

He told The Extra: “These disturbing figures clearly show that Eastwood has a serious jobs crisis.

“While some of these figures can partially be explained by the fact that many local people travel to Glasgow for work and that we have few big local employers, these statistics are nonetheless really troubling.

“People on modest and middle incomes have been hit very hard in recent years and these new figures show how tough times are for many local families”.

He continued: “This was initially caused by the collapse of the banks but is now being made worse by a failure of government to act. I meet so many people desperate to get a job.

“We have an SNP government in Edinburgh and a Tory one in London and they need to do more to help people.

“The two governments have got to work harder so that people can get back to work”.

West of Scotland Conservative MSP Jackson Carlaw believes the rising trend in unemployment was established under Labour.

He said: “Despite the very difficult measures being taken to restore an economy totally broken by Mr Murphy’s party, 
unemployment is now falling across Scotland under the coalition government”.