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Unemployment figures: "real people with real bills to pay"

Citizens Advice Scotland have said today’s unemployment figures are not just statistics but ‘real people, who need real help’.

With the figures showing an increase in the number of Scots out of work, CAS Chief Executive Lucy McTernan says,

“It is important to remember that these are not just statistics – they are real people, with real lives and real bills to pay. And they need real help.

“Clearly both UK and Scottish Governments must take action to create jobs. But it is also vital that there is a strong network of support for those who are out of work. CAB offices across Scotland are being overwhelmed by people who are in financial crisis as a result of being unemployed.

“Being unable to work hits your ability to pay your mortgage, rent, food and fuel bills. It also hits your confidence, and stops you reaching your full potential – both now and in the future.

“People need support to get them through these difficult times, and that means the UK government must ensure that its welfare reform process is handled sensitively and does not make things worse for those in need. They also need to make sure that their programme of public sector cuts doesn’t diminish the services on which vulnerable people most depend.

“Meanwhile, help is available for anyone who is worried about their finances. Scottish CABs are now delivering expert financial advice, through the Money Advice Service. No matter what state your finances are in, our advisers will sit down with you sympathetically, offering the best possible advice on how to maximise your income and avoid debt. This is free, independent advice, available from the CAB to anyone who needs it.”

For more information please contact Tony Hutson on 0131 550 1010. 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.