Jobs supported by public spending

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The extent to which the UK labour market has relied on the public sector was revealed yesterday by the Office for National Statistics.

The ONS said that employment in the National Health Service rose by 4.2 per cent compared with the first quarter of 2009, or 66,000, to reach over 1.6 million staff.

NHS employment increased most in the East Midlands, up by 7.3 per cent, followed by the East of England at 7.0 per cent and the West Midlands at 6.1 per cent; it grew least in Scotland, at 1.2 per cent, followed by the North-east at 1.3 per cent.

At the same time, education accounted for 23 per cent of total public sector employment, at 1.4 million, but while education accounts for 29 per cent of total public sector employment in the West Midlands it only accounts for 18 per cent in London.