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Jobseekers giving up searching for work

Jim
AndertonThe Alliance says the drop in unemployment from 7.2 % to 7% at the same time that employment has stayed static and hours worked has dropped shows jobseekers are giving up rather than getting jobs.

Hours worked in the June '99 quarter were 60.8 million, a slight decrease from March of 64,000. While at the same time the number of people employed has not changed at 1,742,000 and officially unemployed figures are down 3000.

'These 3000 people have left the workforce rather then get jobs. They are discouraged at their prospects,' Jim Anderton said.

'Over the last few days we have heard that at least 160 jobs are to go in two regions alone, with the closure of meat works in the Hawkes Bay and Health Benefits Limited in Wanganui.

'This government's policy of destroying the viability of the regions while at the same time destroying thousands of jobs through tariff removal. Impoverishment policies can be seen in the 13% unemployment rate in Northland, 8.1% in the Waikato and 10.2 % in the Bay of Plenty.

'Maori unemployment is still horrendous at 18.2% and jobless numbers are still far too high at 211,000.

'This government has no strategies for dealing wit h unemployment. They are quite content to claim victory at such small fluctuations in unemployment while they allow the Reserve Bank to keep unemployment at around 6 to 7% permanently.

'The Alliance will be releasing a comprehensive plan to work with business and communities to create jobs i n the next few weeks. We believe that the government has a responsibility to help create sustainable jobs and make sure that the 211,000 kiwis who want work have a good chance at getting it,' Jim Anderton said.

ENDS

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