Unemployment is on the rise in the North East and the region has the lowest levels of employment in the country, according to the latest figures.
A recent survey from the Office of National Statistics showed that the North East has the highest rate of unemployment in England, with 5.4% of the population out of work.
Meanwhile, the rate of employment in the North East is 71.9 per cent, the lowest in the country.
One Sunderland resident, Andrew Hagen, 26, has now been unemployed for two years. Andrew had to leave his previous job in a call centre due to being diagnosed with epilepsy and being considered a health and safety risk.
Andrew said on his own experience with unemployment: “I’d love to earn my money by working, not by being on these kind of benefits.”
The ONS carries out this survey monthly and the data shows that the rate of unemployment in the North East has risen by 1.1 per cent since August 2018, meaning that fewer people are working in the region.
This means that, within the sixth month period, unemployment has risen in the percentage of the population over 16 from 4.3 per cent to 5.4 per cent of the population aged over 16.
SR News contacted a spokesperson from the Department of Workplace and Pensions but they were unable to comment on this matter.
Click below to find out more about Andrew’s unemployment story: