Demos verdict: Long-term sickness still squeezing economic growth

Responding to today’s ONS employment figures, Andrew Phillips, senior researcher at the cross-party think tank Demos, said:

“An increase in the employment rate, and a fall in the economic inactivity rate, are good news for the UK economy and the government.

“However, there was almost no change in the number of people who are inactive because of long-term sickness, which remains over 400,000 higher than before the pandemic, something which is undoubtedly squeezing economic growth.

“To tackle this, central and local government should offer additional employment support to those with health conditions or disabilities, and work with employers to enable these people to access work, as Demos’ own research, which has looked into why the over 50s are leaving work, has found.”