[un-allotted half day] — Unemployment

Part of Opposition Day – in the House of Commons at 5:26 pm on 14th December 2011.

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Photo of Steve Webb Steve Webb The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions 5:26 pm, 14th December 2011

It is important in the few minutes remaining to put on the record some of the facts about the current situation, because there is a danger that the tenor of what we have heard from the Labour party might talk down the British economy and lead to an unnecessary depressing of confidence at a time when we need realism, not talking down the hard-working people in our economy.

Let me give an example. One would hardly believe from today’s debate that since the general election, the number of people in work in this country has risen by a quarter of a million. In fact, the number of people in private sector jobs has risen by more than half a million.