Byrne: Britain needs a change of direction

Labour's shadow work and pension secretary responds to news that UK unemployment is at its highest for 17 years:

“This is a day of judgement for the government.

“Today's figures are the clearest proof yet that the government’s decision to cut too far, and too fast is hurting and just not working. Unemployment is soaring, and more young people are out of work than ever before.

“Britain now needs a change of direction. What we now need is a new plan like Labour's five point plan for jobs and growth. Getting people – and our young people – back to work is quite simply the safest, surest way to get the deficit down and put Britain on the right course for the future.

“Today Labour has summoned the chancellor to the house of commons for an all day debate on jobs and economy. The question he must answer is simple: will he now change course?”