HC Deb 24 July 1990 vol 177 cc290-1
14. Mr. Amos

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the unemployment figures for the Hexham constituency for May.

Mr. Jackson

In May 1990, in the parliamentary constituency of Hexham, unemployment was 19.4 per cent. lower than a year ago.

Mr. Amos

Does my hon. Friend agree that the Government policies that have reduced unemployment in my constituency by more than half since June 1987 contrast strongly with the policies of the Labour party, which deliberately seek to undersell the region on every possible occasion by spreading doom and gloom, which simply is not true?

Mr. Jackson

I can confirm what my hon. Friend says. Unemployment in Hexham has fallen by 59.8 per cent. since 1986. I visited the north-east frequently in my former capacity at the Department of Education and Science and saw the work done by its higher and further education institutions, and I look forward to visiting the training and enterprise councils that are being established so effectively in the area. Much good work is being done, which is reflected in the figures.

Mr. Bell

As a former candidate in Hexham, may I ask the Minister to give the House the exact numbers, not percentages, of unemployed people in Hexham?

Mr. Jackson

I shall have to look that up. The exact number of those unemployed in Hexham is 1,036.

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