589 computers have been lost from libraries in the North West since 2010, and 58 Jobcentre computers have been cut in the North West since 2014.
This is a digital exclusion double-whammy that punishes the poorest in our society, especially as Universal Credit applications are moved online.
One in five unemployed people do not have access to the internet.
This comes following recent Lloyds Bank research showing that 10% of the population of the North West have zero digital skills.
West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper said:
“Public library and Jobcentre closures are causing a crisis of cuts to public computers. This is a digital exclusion double-whammy.
“One in five people out of work don’t have access to the internet, and under this Tory Government there are fewer and fewer places for them to turn.
“For people who need to fill in Universal Credit or job applications, access to a computer is essential. Computer cuts are yet another example of the vicious cycle of Tory austerity.”
|Region||Jobcentre computers in 2014||Jobcentre computers in 2019||Jobcentre computers cuts since 2014|
|London and Home Counties||1794||1723||71|
|Region||Library computers in 2010||Library computers in 2018||Library computers cut since 2010||% of population with zero digital skills in 2018|
|Yorkshire and Humberside||3820||3291||529||6|
Library computer numbers, source: House of Commons Library (full data below)
Jobcentre computer numbers, source: Written Parliamentary Question https://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2019-02-14/221633/
Zero Digital Skills data, source: Lloyds Bank, https://www.lloydsbank.com/assets/media/pdfs/banking_with_us/whats-happening/LB-Consumer-Digital-Index-2018–Report.pdf