More in work is good news for district

More people in East Dunbartonshire are in work after employment figures showed the number of those claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance locally dropped by 24 per cent over the past year.

The latest figures revealed the JSA claimant count decreased from 876 in November 2014 to 661 in November 2015.

Unemployment in Scotland fell by 8,000 and stands at 156,000 in the months from August to October 2015. However, the Scottish unemployment rate is 5.6 per cent, above the rate of 5.2 per cent for the UK as a whole, according to the Office for National Statistics.

East Dunbartonshire MP John Nicolson described the drop in unemployment in East Dunbartonshire and throughout Scotland as “welcome news”.

He said: “In particular, I am incredibly encouraged by figures which show that a record 92.9 per cent of school leavers in Scotland enter a positive destination.

“This is testament to the commitment to education that has been at the core of the Scottish Government’s policy and, in spite of massive budget cuts from the Conservative-led UK Government.

“We are rightly proud of our schools in East Dunbartonshire and it is important to highlight that 96.1 per cent of our young people leaving school enter positive destinations, which is higher than the national average.

“Furthermore, organisations such as Skills Development Scotland have been pivotal in providing opportunities for people looking for work in East Dunbartonshire. Over the last year they have supported over 500 Modern Apprenticeships in the constituency, including 174 starts.Through work like this, structural, long-term unemployment is less of an issue in East Dunbartonshire with the vast majority of JSA claimants unemployed for less than 13 weeks.”