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CAS reports 'growing despair' among young unemployed

Citizens Advice Scotland have responded to the latest unemployment figures, saying that young Scots in particular are in ‘despair’ over the economic situation.

Today’s figures show that unemployment in Scotland rose by 5,000, to 215,000 in the three months from July to September. The number of unemployed Scots aged 18-24 is 84,000 (compared to 58,000 in 2009).

CAS Head of Policy Susan McPhee said,

“Yet again we see an increase in the number of Scots who are out of work. And yet again what is particularly troubling is the numbers of young Scots who can’t find a job. We have been gathering evidence recently about the impact the recession has had on Scots aged 16-24, and we’ve been frankly shocked by the levels of frustration and despair we’ve found.

“When you get behind the statistics and actually talk to young Scots about the economy, you find that many of them feel they are paying the price of a recession they did nothing to create. They often feel they have no meaningful future, and that unemployment is having a devastating impact on their health and their state of mind, as well as on their economic life.

“The UK and Scottish governments need to put aside their differences and work together to invest in Scotland’s future – and that means investing in our young people, giving them the support and confidence they need to make a success of their own lives, and of the economy in general.

“Meanwhile anyone who is out of work and struggling financially can get ‘money advice’ from their local CAB. We don’t have a magic wand, but we can often finmd ways to help ease the pressure a little. Our advice is free, independent and confidential.”

For more information, interviews etc please contact Tony Hutson on o131 550 1010 or 07774 751655. NB This is the number of the CAS Press Office, for use by journalists only. If you are a member of the public looking for CAB advice please contact your local bureau.

CAS evidence on how young Scots have been hit by the recession has been published in our report, ‘Being Young Being Heard,’ which is on our website at The report includes quotes from young Scots talking about the recession in their own words, and highlights their experience of issues like unemployment, homelessness and debt.