THE number of unemployed people in Sheffield has risen by almost 1,000 on this time last year, figures have revealed.
A total of 17,761 residents were claiming Jobseekers Allowance in February – up 0.4 per cent for the same period in 2012.
While unemployment in men fell by 701, the number of woman claimants rose by 1,547, according to the National Office of Statistics.
The news has been met with disappointment from politicians who fear women in South Yorkshire have been hardest hit by cuts.
Paul Blomfield, MP for Sheffield Central, said: “Sadly I’m not surprised that female unemployment has risen because women have faced the brunt of the Government’s cuts and job losses. The Government’s public sector spending cuts disproportionately hit women and the loss of retail jobs, in part caused by our flatlining economy.”
Mr Blomfield called for more effort to be made to encourage women into traditionally male areas of employment such as engineering and manufacturing, where investment is being made.
He said: “I would welcome efforts to encourage women to work in sectors like engineering, which have been historically male dominated.
“This week in Parliament I met with engineers and scientists from Sheffield and was particularly pleased that many of them were women. Clearly there is a long way to go but initiatives to encourage women to consider careers in these areas have my full support.”
In Barnsley the number of unemployed people is up 0.1 per cent compared with last February, whereas Rotherham and Doncaster have witnessed a fall of 0.2 and 0.1 per cent respectively.
Barnsley MP Michael Dugher said: “The total number of people claiming Jobs Seekers’ Allowance in Barnsley has jumped to 8,040 – the first time it has risen above 8,000 since 1996. Figures for youth unemployment are up yet again.”
Unemployed in numbers:
Number of people claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance in February - 17K
Percentage rise in joblessness compared with 2012 - 0.4
Increase in number of women claimants on last February - 1,547