TORY general election candidate Mark Eastwood claims that unemployment rates in Dewsbury are falling – but Labour’s Paula Sherriff says he is “deluded”.
Mr Eastwood, above, cited official figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), which show there are now 2,581,074 people in work across Yorkshire.
In Dewsbury, he said the number of people claiming key out-of-work benefits has fallen by 444 since 2010 – an overall reduction of 16 per cent.
But Labour candidate Paula Sherriff, who has been the town’s MP for the past four years, said “there’s nothing to boast about”.
Mr Eastwood said: “These figures for Dewsbury, Yorkshire and our entire country are another sign that the fundamentals of the British economy are strong, with the unemployment rate lower than at any point in nearly half a century.
“The Conservative Government has created 3.7million jobs, including almost 200,000 more jobs in Yorkshire. We should not let Labour throw all that hard work away.”
Miss Sherriff said: “The Tories are deluded over jobs in our area – their growth figures mask a reality of insecure work, zero-hours contracts and agency work and those who simply can’t get enough hours to sustain a decent income.
“Food bank usage has soared while more and more people are trapped by in-work poverty. There’s nothing to boast about here.
“In Dewsbury, Mirfield, Denby Dale and Kirkburton, some 12 per cent of workers – 5,200 people – are being paid the lowest possible wage according to the government’s own statistics and real wages are still lower than they were before the global financial crisis.”
Other candidates in Dewsbury & Mirfield are Simon Cope (Green) and John Rossington (Lib Dem).