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Benefit Numbers Fall

Benefit Numbers Fall

The number of people receiving the Unemployment Benefit has
dropped by 4,224 over the last month.

“That’s the single biggest drop in the Unemployment Benefit since the recession began,” says Social Development Minister Paula Bennett.

The number of people on all types of benefits has dropped by 10,816 over the same period.

Over half of that total number, relates to young people on benefits.

“It’s really pleasing to see 5,595 young people came off a benefit in just the last month,” says Ms Bennett.

“Young people have been among the hardest hit by the recession and initiatives like Job Ops and Community Max have proven vital in keeping young New Zealanders in work,” says Ms Bennett.

3,636 position had been filled through Job Ops by the end of February, with 2,927 positions filled through Community Max

Work and Income has continued its work-first approach, using work brokers and its specialised recruitment service Job Connect to match people with jobs.

In the last week of February, 38% of those who came into Work and Income didn’t end up needing a benefit.

More than 5000 new job vacancies were listed at Work and Income in February, as work brokers continue to engage with employers and actively identify opportunities.

“While this is early days and the effects of the recession are still being felt; there is light at the end of the tunnel,” says Ms Bennett.

Regionally the biggest drop in Unemployment Benefit numbers was in the East Coast (20%), Auckland (16%) and Bay of Plenty (11%).

Good availability of seasonal work in areas like Gisborne, Bay of Plenty, Otago and Hawke’s Bay is expected to remain strong through to April.


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