4 Nov 2011

Maori Party concerned about rise in number of jobless

7:06 pm on 4 November 2011

The Maori Party says it is disappointed the latest figures show what it calls a shock jump in the number of unemployed Maori and Pacific Islanders.

Figures released by Statistics New Zealand on Thursday show unemployment has risen by 7000 over the past year and is now only 5000 short of the peak of 162,000 in late 2009 during the recession.

Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia says National's poorly designed employment policies, including the 90-day work trial, are affecting vulnerable people.

Mrs Turia is particularly concerned that, in the three months to September, unemployment for Maori rose from 13.7% to 15.1%, and went up to 13.8% for Pacific Islanders.

National says 60,000 jobs have been created by this Government in the past two years and it expects unemployment to fall if it is re-elected on 26 November.