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Benefits claims in Moray fall year on year for October

By Alan Beresford

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BENEFITS claims in Moray have continued to fall year on year, newly published figures have revealed.

Benefits claims in Moray year-on-year for October have fallen faster than the national equivalents.
Benefits claims in Moray year-on-year for October have fallen faster than the national equivalents.

Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) statistics have shown that overall those claiming benefits in the region fell by 85 – seven per cent – to 1220 in October compared to the same month last year.

The over-50 age bracket showed the biggest fall, down 12 per cent from 340 to 300.

A smaller decrease was to be found in the 18-24 category, decreasing by 10 (four per cent) from 230 to 220.

These figures include both those who are claiming benefits while in work and those who are looking for a job.

Moray is performing better than the Scotland-wide benefits averages.

Benefits claims across all ages were down by three per cent – 2745 – to 104,185 with over-50s falling by 1845 or seven per cent to 23,615.

However, in the 18-24 bracket there was a nationwide rise in claimants, going up by 205 to 18,340, a rise of one per cent.

Employer and Partnership Manager Moray Jobcentres Jane Munro.
Employer and Partnership Manager Moray Jobcentres Jane Munro.

Talking about how people become job ready, Employer and Partnership Manager Moray Jobcentres Jane Munro said: "Our local Jobcentres are hosting a full range of activity, including a jobs fair on November 23 with a focus on the employers with live vacancies in Moray including care sector employers, Gordonstoun School Ltd, Moray Council, Makar Technologies Ltd and Bell Group.

"Jobcentres have a wrap-around service as customers with health issues can access specialist support through a Disability Employment Adviser. Access to Work is also available to support people with a health condition return to work – please check out www.gov.uk and search Access to Work for more information.

“Now is a great time for jobseekers to give their career aspirations a kick-start. One way, is to apply for some of the hundreds of Christmas jobs being advertised locally, as a stepping stone to get back into the work routine, while developing new skills and sharpening existing ones. With the support of their work coach jobseekers can get the help they need to take full advantage of opportunities available now.

“Unlocking the skills and abilities of people can improve employment prospects. Support is available to everyone, whatever their age, health condition or if they’re just looking to improve their career prospects. Importantly jobseeking parents on Universal Credit, can now get extra financial help through increased childcare payments.

“Locally we are working hard with employers to fill their vacancies, such as Global Highland, Johnstons of Elgin, Moray Council and Makar Technologies Ltd.

"Jobseekers can also check out the thousands of vacancies on offer, by searching the DWP Find a Job website.” or follow Moray Works on Facebook."

Work and Pensions Secretary Mel Stride MP
Work and Pensions Secretary Mel Stride MP

Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Mel Stride MP added: “We are leaving no stone unturned to help people into work, with a record number of employees on payrolls – up nearly 400,000 in the last year alone with 3.9 million more people in work than in 2010.

“With our ambitious welfare reforms, including the expansion of free childcare and extra support for people with health conditions, we are taking long term decisions that will grow the economy and change lives for the better.”

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