Around 49,000 fewer people in the West Midlands are living in workless households compared to a year ago official Government figures have revealed.
The percentage of workless households, where no adult is in paid employment, has dropped by 1.9% over the 12 months to September, compared to a national fall of just 0.6%.
And 24,000 fewer West Midlands children are living in workless households compared to 2017.
The same Labour Force Survey data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) also reveals that those in working households, where all members aged 16 or over are employed, has risen by 1.1 per cent in the last 12 months compared to 0.1% nationally.
The data shows that employment in the West Midlands is gradually increasing showing that the region’s economy is growing and employers are creating and filling more jobs locally.
As well as showing a medium-term trend of increasing employment the figures also show the gap between the West Midlands and national average working households rate closing.
Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street said: “The West Midlands has created jobs at a faster rate than the UK as a whole over the last year meaning more people are now living in working households. Almost 50,000 fewer people, almost half of them children, are in workless households compared to 12 months ago.
“While we are making good progress we know there is still a long way to go. So we will continue to support local businesses and attract investment to create jobs while helping our people gain the skills they need to take those opportunities.
“We will continue to work to grow our economy and do it in a way which helps all our communities, so that we can all share in and benefit from the region’s success.”
The West Midlands Combined Authority’s (WMCA) Strategic Economic Plan, launched in 2016, set out ambitious targets to create an extra 500,000 jobs by 2030.
While these results are promising we will not rest. We will continue to work to grow our economy and do it in a way which helps all our communities, so that we can all share in and benefit from the region’s success.
The ONS figures for July to September 2018 revealed that 56.3% of households in the West Midlands are defined as working – that is a home with all adults in employment. A total of 30% live in mixed households where there are working and workless members. The remaining 13.7% of households are classed as workless.
The number of people in workless households is 350,000, a reduction of 49,000 in 12 months. The number of children was 116,000. That is 24,000 fewer than 2017.