THE number of young people out of work in Portsmouth has risen dramatically in the past year, figures reveal.
Peter Skinner, Euro MP for Portsmouth, issued statistics which show the number of people aged between 18 and 24 who have been unemployed for a year or more jumped massively between April 2011 and April 2012.
In the Portsmouth North constituency, the figures have risen from 5 to 55; while in Portsmouth South they have increased from 15 to 60.
The increase has mirrored the national picture, which saw youth unemployment rise to record levels in January.
Mr Skinner said: ‘Young people in Portsmouth continue to bear the brunt and that is unacceptable.’
Despite the figures, businesses have been praised for trying to help more young people get into work.
Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt countered in the House of Commons yesterday by saying the number of people claiming Jobseekers Allowance had fallen in Portsmouth since 2010.
She said: ‘We have always been a city of entrepreneurs and each week I hear from people looking to set up new ventures.
‘More still needs to be done in job creation and back-to-work support, but we ought to pause and thank all those who are creating jobs and opportunities and providing the advice and support to get people back to work.’
Portsmouth South MP Mike Hancock also said more needs to be done to encourage businesses to create apprenticeships and for schools to promote them as a career path.
He asked that firms wanting to set up a scheme should contact him for help.