Tourist towns facing ‘stark’ jobs crisis, warns Starmer

Tourist towns across the UK could face a “stark” jobs crisis due to a shortened summer season, Sir Keir Starmer has said.

The Labour leader issued the warning as he called for more targeted, flexible support to protect jobs in communities that are reliant on tourism.

It comes as analysis of Office for National Statistics unemployment and labour market data by the Labour Party suggests areas with a larger share of the local workforce in tourism industries have seen larger average rises in the unemployment claimant count since February.

The party indicated that in areas where over a fifth of workers are in tourism-related jobs, the claimant count among working-age adults has risen by 174% since February, compared with 110% for the UK as a whole.

Keir Starmer
Sir Keir Starmer (Joe Giddens/PA)

Ahead of a visit to businesses in Falmouth, Cornwall, Sir Keir urged the Government to provide a targeted extension of the furlough scheme to support the sectors that are hardest hit.

“We are lucky to have many world-class tourist destinations across the UK. But the jobs crisis facing tourist towns is stark,” he said.

“There are fantastic domestic options for British holidaymakers, but the crucial summer season has been cut short. With many businesses still unable to reopen fully, the Government’s one-size-fits-all approach to jobs risks these towns falling through the cracks.

“We need a targeted extension of the furlough scheme for the hardest-hit sectors and proper support in place to help those who are unemployed back into work.

“People are worried about their job prospects. The Labour Party is focused on fighting for every job and every part of the country.”

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