7th July 2011
Alan Whitehead MP has voted in Parliament to support a higher levy on bankers’ bonuses to fund new jobs for young people in Southampton.
This week Labour tabled an amendment to the Finance Bill which would repeat the levy on bankers bonuses introduced by the last Labour government. The amendment would also require the government to use the £2 billion raised to help create up to 100,000 more jobs for young people, build more affordable homes, and support small businesses.
Southampton’s Labour MPs Alan Whitehead and John Denham both backed the amendment. Southampton Test (Alan Whitehead’s constituency) has seen a rise in youth unemployment of 5.3% over the last year, while Southampton Itchen (John Denham’s constituency) has seen a rise of 9%.
However Romsey & Southampton North Conservative MP Caroline Nokes failed to back the amendment, despite a 6.4% rise in youth unemployment in her own constituency.
Youth unemployment currently stands at almost one million. That means 1 in 5 young people are currently unable to find work. In Southampton youth unemployment stands over 1400.
The amendment was voted down by Tories and Lib Dems by 288 to 215.
Dr Whitehead said:
“Hampshire lost over 1000 jobs for young people last year when the Conservatives abolished the Future Jobs Fund. This was the government’s chance to put that mistake right, but they’ve flunked it.”
“Putting young people on the dole is not just a waste of talent but a waste of money too. Failing to get Britain back to work fast enough is helping to push up the benefits bill by over £12 billion – that’s £500 for every household in Southampton.
“There are thousands of young people – including many in Southampton- whose talents are going to waste. The Government continues to fail to understand that getting people off the dole and into work is the best way to get the deficit down. Yesterday’s measure would have been a key step in a more balanced deficit reduction plan that puts jobs and growth first.”
Southampton residents can sign up to Labour’s campaign to tackle youth unemployment by going to www.britainslosttalent.co.uk
- Labour tabled an amendment to the Finance Bill calling for last year’s £3.5 billion bank bonus tax to be repeated this year – on top of the permanent bank levy – and for the funds raised to be used to create jobs and apprenticeships for young people, build more affordable homes and support small businesses.
- Both of Southampton’s Labour MPs (Alan Whitehead and John Denham) voted in favour of the amendment. Conservative and Liberal Democrats MPs including Caroline Nokes and Chris Huhne, voted against the measure in the House of Commons by 215 to 288 (see here)
- Statistics on youth unemployment in Southampton:
JSA claimants aged 24 and under:
|Romsey & Southampton North||250||+6.4%|
Source: House of Commons Library
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