Thursday, November 05, 2009

41,000 out of work under National

All this week the Herald has been running soft-interviews and profiles of National Ministers, celebrating its first year in office. Meanwhile, today's Household Labour Force Survey shows their true record in government: 41,000 more people out of work, and the worst unemployment rate in 15 years.

Except that when you dig into the numbers [XLS], its worse than that. In addition to those extra 41,000 unemployed, another 47,000 have simply given up, leaving the labour force entirely. Its a dramatic reversal of the trend of increasing participation rates, and to the extent that it is involuntary, that these people would rather be working, then it is something National should be deeply ashamed of.

It is the government's job to keep people in work during a recession. National has failed at that job. When people turned to them, they abandoned them to the market. And that is simply not good enough.