Chloe Smith
MP for Norwich North

Recent figures show that Norwich North has a higher than average number of people claiming Universal Credit in periods since the pandemic

Author: Chloe Smith, Updated: 04 February 2021 16:54

These figures underline the scale of the challenge that our country and our city is facing. I know how worried people are - about their health, the health of their loved ones, their jobs, their businesses, and their financial security. And that’s why it's right that the economic priority has remained the same: protect jobs. 

The Government has done a huge amount to support people through the pandemic, including increasing Universal Credit, extending furlough, more generous support for the self-employed, and an ability to top-up Bounce Back Loans. I support these because they protect jobs in Norwich and help people to continue to provide for their families. 

Ensuring people in Norwich have the good jobs we need is one of my priorities and so throughout the pandemic I’ve always worked to help constituents with their livelihoods even as we have had to aim to saves lives through the NHS.  

Having founded the Norwich for Jobs project, I’ve seen how we can help young people into local work. So it will remain very important to give businesses of all sizes an incentive to create more trainee opportunities to give young people a vital route into work. I am pleased that the Government have announced new funding to help get young people into work and continue to prioritise job creation and ensure more young people can gain the skills they need to progress in their careers as we build back better from the pandemic.  

Norwich For Jobs will continue to help Norwich young people find a chance. We encourage local firms to get involved and use the new schemes. I am pleased that the government has recently made it even simpler for employers of all sizes to benefit from the Kickstart scheme by removing the limit requiring they create a minimum of 30 vacancies to apply directly. 

These numbers show that people of all ages may be unemployed because of the challenges of the pandemic. The JETS scheme can help people of any age, aimed especially at people who are out of work because of coronavirus. You can find out more about the JETS Sceme here: 

Finally, we have to look to the future and think about where more good jobs will come from. Norwich has many strengths - its city centre, its independence, its heritage, and lots more - and many think these can bounce back after the pandemic. We have secured investment that will help, like the East Norwich plans through the multi-million pound towns fund. As a local MP I will keep jobs as my top priority, to help people look ahead with hope to opportunity and prosperity.