YORK has seen another rise in the number of people claiming government support to help them through the coronavirus crisis.

However, the city has fared better than many other UK towns and cities, ranking bottom in a table of places which have seen increases in those claiming unemployment-related benefits since the lockdown.

Jenny Shaw, of Job Centre Plus Monkgate, York, said there was also a wealth of support in place to help people seeking work, from workshops on CVs and job interviews to skills training.

The new employment programme, JETS (Job Entry Targeted Support) is supporting people left jobless due to Covid-19, while the Government’s Kickstart Scheme is welcoming applications from businesses, ready to help local young people whose livelihoods are threatened by Covid-19

Jenny said the latest local authority data, from September 10, showed that 12,972 residents in York were claiming Universal Credit, up from 12,747 the previous month.

In Selby, the figure was 5,424, compared with 5,386, while in Ryedale, that stood at 3,644, up from 3,621, and in Harrogate it was 10,249, up from 10,197.

Nationally, the Office for National Statistics said unemployment rose by 138,000 quarter on quarter to 1.52 million in the three months to August – the highest since the start of 2017.

This saw the rate of unemployment jump to 4.5 per cent, from 4.1 per cent in the previous three months.

The Centre for Cities has tracked the latest unemployment claim statistics across 63 of the UK’s cities and largest towns.Its latest data covers the period up to September 2020 and shows the number of unemployment benefit claimants since March has increased by 2.3 per cent.

Today, 3.6 per of the working-age population in York are claiming unemployment-related benefits, the centre said.

This places the city at the bottom of a table of towns and cities that have had the largest increases in people claiming unemployment-related benefits since the March lockdown - with Birmingham at the top with 9.8 per cent.

Between March and July, 31.8 per cent of eligible local jobs were being supported by the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

The statistics also show that 48 per cent of York’s working-age population have high-skilled qualifications.

Experts are warning that unemployment rates will rise as the furlough programme ends on October 31.

* To find out about employment events, workshops, courses and work placements in York and North Yorkshire call 01904 682267 to speak to a member of the JobCentre Plus Employer Engagement Team.