Ashfield and Eastwood MP Gloria De Piero has described statistics that show that wages in Ashfield have fallen in real terms since the 2008 recession as ‘shocking’.
Figures obtained by Gloria from the House of Commons library show that across the East Midlands, median weekly earnings for full-time employees were £502 in April 2016.
Though in cash terms, this wage is £55 per week higher than when the recession hit in 2008, when the figure is adjusted for inflation it works out as £31 per week lower – or 5.8 per cent – than 2008 pay packets.
Median weekly earnings in Ashfield also tend to be lower than for the East Midlands as a whole, and it has been estimated that the figure for Ashfield is just £450.
The median weekly wage for the UK as a whole is £539.
Gloria said: “It is absolutely shocking that people living in Ashfield and the wider East Midlands are earning less today in real terms than they were eight years ago.
“The effects of the recession are still being felt in this area and with the cost of living rising too, hard-working Ashfield people are struggling to make ends meet through no fault of their own.”
Following the recent Autumn Statement, the Institute for Fiscal Studies said that by 2021 workers will still be earning less in real terms than they did when the recession hit in 2008.
Meanwhile the Treasury’s own figures show that the poorest 30 per cent of earners will be worse off by the end of this Parliament because of Government cuts to tax, welfare and public spending measures.
This is mainly due to a four-year freeze on working age benefits and tax credits, coupled with rising inflation pushing up the cost of living.
Gloria added: “The Government may not want to admit it, but the economy is not improving and life is getting harder for millions of workers in this country.
“Areas like Ashfield need a Labour government that looks after middle and lower income earners rather than having a Tory one that gives the richest in society tax breaks and just looks after their own.”
NB: The median weekly wage is the point at which half of employees earn more and half earn less.
Due to small sample sizes and the way data is collected, the Library recommends looking at this figure only at regional level rather than constituency level to avoid error.