A new study by the Institute of Public Policy Research (IPPR) warns that many over-50s who lost their jobs during the recession may be forced into early retirement after facing a miserable job market and long-term employment.
Almost one quarter of those who are long-term unemployed – without work for more than two years – are over 50. If you are battling with unemployment.
Tony Dolphin, chief economist of IPPR, explains why this is so concerning: “The risk is that older people who have been out of work for this long stand little chance of ever working again. This means many will be forced into early retirement, which will mean a lower standard of living during their old age.”
In addition to the startling figures for over-50s, the number of long-term unemployed youth — ages 18 to 24 who have not worked for more than two years —has almost trebled since 2008. The number skyrocketed from 36,000 to 95,000 jobless young people.
Employment Minister Chris Grayling said the Government’s answer to tackle unemployment is the Work Programme, a scheme to try and move people from benefits to the working sector. He insists ministers “have a plan for growth which will encourage businesses to expand and take on more workers.”
Opposition from the Left
This disheartening survey comes just as Labour plans to escalate attacks on the Coalition over issues such as the economy. A leaked memo from Shadow Cabinet member Shaun Woodward suggested that senior party figures were brewing plans to slam David Cameron for his shift to the right on issues like crime and immigration. These positions, however, could prove popular with voters.