Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Politics
11 March 2015updated 24 Jul 2021 2:57pm

Black and minority ethnic youth unemployment “rose by 50% under the coalition“

New statistics suggest that over 40,000 black, Asian and ethnic minority people aged 18 to 24 have been unemployed for more than 12 months.

By Anna Leszkiewicz

The number of young people from black, Asian and ethnic minority (BAME) backgrounds in long-term unemployment has increased by 50% since 2010, according to Labour. 

The number of BAME 16 to 24-year-olds out of work for more than 12 months has increased to 41,000 – accounting for one-fifth of youth unemployment – according to an analysis of official figures by the House of Commons Library and the Office for National Statistics.

The significance of this rise is thrown in to sharp relief when compared to the trends for young white people. There was a 2% fall in long-term unemployment among young white people, resulting in an overall fall in long-term youth unemployment of 1%.

Labour attributed the rise to the Coalition’s “shocking complacency”.

“These figures are astonishing,” said the shadow justice secretary Sadiq Khan. “At a time where general unemployment is going down and employment is going up, it is doing the reverse for this group… we have got a generation that is being thrown on the scrapheap, and what compounds it is that a disproportionate number are black, Asian, minority ethnic.”

Select and enter your email address Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. A weekly newsletter helping you fit together the pieces of the global economic slowdown. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The New Statesman’s weekly environment email on the politics, business and culture of the climate and nature crises - in your inbox every Thursday. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A newsletter showcasing the finest writing from the ideas section and the NS archive, covering political ideas, philosophy, criticism and intellectual history - sent every Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how New Statesman Media Group may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.
THANK YOU

Jonathan Portes, Director of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, told the NS: “High levels of unemployment in this group are a long-standing problem and a serious one, but, as the sample size for this group is small, it’s difficult to conclude from this data that things are necessarily getting worse.”

Content from our partners
Harnessing breakthrough thinking
Are we there yet with electric cars? The EV story – with Wejo
Sherif Tawfik: The Middle East and Africa are ready to lead on the climate

Labour used the statistics to highlight their “approach to race quality”, drawing attention to their BAME manifesto and Jobs Guarantee. The party states: “Labour’s pledge to guarantee every young person out of work for over a year and claiming benefits a paid starter job and training will help more than 3,200 BAME young people back into work.”

Portes emphasised that Labour’s proposed policy may not be enough to tackle the issue, adding, “Labour’s Jobs Guarantee clearly doesn’t address the scale of the problem – 3,200 young people is a very small proportion of the total.”

Topics in this article :