Pain as jobs go

By Alesha Capone
THOUSANDS of families in the West are struggling to pay bills and meet living costs, as unemployment rises.
Figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show the unemployment rate in Victoria rose to five per cent between December 2010 and December last year.
Melbourne’s outer West – including the municipalities of Wyndham, Brimbank, Melton, Maribyrnong and Hobsons Bay – recorded the highest rise in unemployment.
There were 6800 more jobseekers registered in the West at December 2011, compared to the previous 12 months.
Wyndham City Salvation Army operations manager Terry Brookshaw said the charity has been struggling to meet demand “which is a sign people are struggling”.
His sister-in-law, Sue Brookshaw, is the organisation’s community support services manager.
Mrs Brookshaw said comparing December 2010, to the same period last year, showed there were more people seeking help.
“In 2011 we gave out just under $75,000 more than we gave out in 2010,” she said.
This assistance includes giving disadvantaged people food vouchers, food parcels, assistance with bills and back-to-school costs for children.
Mrs Brookshaw said in 2010, the Wyndham City Salvation Army assisted 2182 people, compared to 2537 last year.
“Not everybody has somewhere to live, who come to see us – there are lots of people who are homeless or who live in their car, or are going from situation to situation, from couch to couch,” she said.
To donate to the Wyndham City Salvation Army, contact 9741 7359.

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