Figures released by the Scottish Government have highlighted that youth employment in Midlothian have decreased dramatically over the last decade.
The Scottish Government’s Regional Employment Patterns in Scotland study looks at how employment differs throughout it Scotland. It found that youth employment levels have dropped from 80.3 per cent ten years ago to only 58.1 per cent in 2018.
Youth employment describes the number of young people aged 18-24 who have been able to find either part-time or full-time employment.
This comes after the Prince’s Trust eBay Youth Index revealed that young people in Scotland’s overall wellbeing score has dropped since 2018, with 70 per cent feeling anxious about their future due to the economic landscape. More than 50 per cent worry they won’t be able to buy their own home, and a majority fear they will never be financially stable enough to plan ahead.
The statistics also revealed that Midlothian was one of fourteen local authorities where employment for women increased between 2008 and 2018 but where male employment fell.
Michelle Ballantyne, MSP for South Scotland, voiced her concerns with the findings of the Scottish Government’s report and called on the SNP to look at the factors contributing to the decline in youth employment.
Michelle Ballantyne MSP commented:
“It’s incredibly concerning that young people in Midlothian are struggling to find jobs. The Scottish Government’s own report has highlighted how youth employment has fallen by over 20 per cent in the last ten years.
“Midlothian is expanding quickly, and has one of the highest population growth rates in Scotland. As more people come to Midlothian, we need to think about the job opportunities that are available to them.
“I hope the SNP reflects on the findings of the report and looks at what they can do differently to ensure that jobs and growth are going to areas that are in real need of it.”