An average of 25 people are chasing job vacancies in some parts of London, according to a new study that reveals an east-west divide in the capital.
People living in the eastern half of London face an uphill struggle to find work, with 25 jobseekers chasing a single position in one area, the TUC’s study found.
The average number of people applying for each position across Britain is six, but is much harder in London, with nine candidates putting their names forward.
Waltham Forest is the most competitive borough of London for work, with 25 people competing for each employment opportunity, while it is almost as tough in Hackney (22).
But there is less competition for posts in Kingston, where an average of just three people apply for each post. Four jobseekers chase roles in Hillingdon and Richmond, the study found.
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The TUC said an east-west divide appears to be developing in the capital, comparable to the north-south split on employment across the UK.
The number of jobseekers per vacancy has increased in around half of London’s 33 boroughs over the past 12 months, according to the study.
TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: “While bankers are back popping champagne corks and picking up mega bonuses in the City, many ordinary Londoners are struggling to find work.
“Ministers claim there are plenty of jobs out there, but with more than 20 job seekers chasing each vacancy in parts of the capital, there are terrible employment blackspots that cause huge economic and social damage to local areas.”
However, the Department for Work and Pensions insisted jobs are available. A spokesman said: “We are focused on restoring the economy and supporting private sector jobs growth and latest official figures show there are 100,000 more people in work now in London than in May 2010, driven by increases in private sector employment. There are jobs available and the Work Programme will give people the tailored support they need to get back into work.”
But Barber believes it is time for the Government to rethink its strategy. He said: “Strong and sustainable economic growth is the only way to tackle our jobs crisis but the Government’s deep and rapid spending cuts are jeopardising our chances of recovery.
“The Chancellor urgently needs to put forward a plan B before our economy heads back towards recession and even more people lose their jobs.”