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We [Labour] are not the party of people on benefits. We don’t want to be seen, and we’re not the party, to represent those out of work. Rachel Reeves, July 2022
I grew up in the Thirties with our unemployed father. He did not riot, he got on his bike and looked for work. Norman Tebbit, speech Conservative Party Conference 15th October 1981
The experience of work for millions during the 1980s was being out of work. The British at Work: To Have and Have Not 1980-1995, BBC 2011
Mrs Thatcher’s administration simply didn’t think it was the job of the state to keep us all in work ... This new Tory administration made it clear it was time to sink or swim. ibid.
Never had so many had so few work prospects. ibid.
Employment Tribunals boomed. In 1995 around about 90,000 cases were brought. Today it’s upwards of 230,000 a year. Kirsty Young, The British at Work: The Age of Uncertainty 1995 – Now
During the 1930s in some towns of the industrial north 70% of men are out of work. The British VII: War and Peace, Sky Atlantic 2012
1980 saw the largest rise in unemployment since the depression of the 1930s. Maggie: The First Lady II, 2003
I was a criminal. Presently I’m just unemployed. London Boulevard 2010 starring Colin Farrell & Keira Knightley & Ray Winstone & Anna Friel & David Thewlis & Ben Chaplin & Eddie Marsan & Sanjeev Bhaskar & Stephen Graham & Gerald Home et al, director William Monahan
Unemployment coming in the wake of the wartime boom is beginning to grip the country ... The same old struggle: the struggle to survive. The Roaring Twenties 1939 starring James Cagney & Humphrey Bogart & Priscilla Lane & Glady George & Jeffrey Lynn & Frank McHugh & George Meeker & Paul Kelly et al, director, commentary
Nobody tells the truth about unemployment. Yes, Prime Minister s2e8: The Tangled Web, Sir Humphrey, Ludovic Kennedy radio show after-chat with microphone on, BBC 1988
Perhaps you should put out a press statement expressing sympathy for the unemployed. Well you might be joining them any moment. ibid. Bernard to Sir Humphrey
You cannot under the capitalist structure avoid unemployment. Do not have alliances with the enemy. That is breaking a vital principle and is going to bind us with shackles to capitalism. A J Cook, address TUC September 1928
I was a kind of a strange child. My parents knew early on something must be wrong with me. Michael Moore, Roger & Me, 1989
When I was a kid I thought only three people worked for General Motors: Pat Boone, Diana Shaw and my dad. My birthplace of Flint, Michigan, was the birthplace of General Motors, the biggest corporation in the world. There were more auto factories and auto workers here than any other city on Earth. ibid.
My uncle Vern was in something called the Great Flint sit-down strike. Just hours before the year’s end in 1936 he and thousands of other GM workers took over the Flint factories and barricaded themselves inside refusing to budge for forty-four days. The National Guard was called in. ibid.
Ronald Reagan arrived in Flint and took a dozen unemployed workers out for a pizza. ibid.
I continued my search for Roger [Smith, General Motors]. ibid.
With 30,000 jobs now eliminated the city decided to turn to that one event that had made us so happy – the Grand Parade. ibid.
Deputy Fred Ross seemed especially busy these days. After doing twenty-four evictions in one day he arrived to evict a woman who was a month behind in her rent. She quickly got the landlord on the phone and after telling him that a film crew had arrived with the sheriff the landlord told Fred not to evict the woman and her children. ibid.
The Mayor though was having better luck with an even higher authority. He paid TV evangelist Robert Schuller $20,000 to come to Flint and rid the city of its unemployment plague. ibid.
The crowning jewel in Flint’s plan to attract tourists was Auto World, hailed by city officials as the world’s largest indoor theme park. ibid.
Auto World closed due to a lack of visitors. ibid.
Half of Flint was now receiving some form of government welfare. Meanwhile, Roger Smith gave himself a $2,000,000 raise. ibid.
More than forty-nine million Americans are now living below the poverty line, many as a result of unemployment. America’s Poor Kids, BBC 2013
Good morning, jobseekers. The League of Gentlemen: Escape from Royston Vasey s1e6, Pauline, BBC 1999
Pauline, she’s worse than you. The League of Gentlemen: Destination: Royston Vasey s2e1, Mickey
You haven’t got a job, remember ... Get out of my sight, and my Re-Start. ibid. Cathy Carter Smith
Unemployment is due to the large import of goods from Britain and other countries. The Government haven’t used the powers which they have for the benefit of the country. Eamon de Valera
In some communities unemployed is even as high as 80%. This World: South Africa: The Massacre that Changed a Nation, BBC 2013
Commons sitting suspended in uproar after clash over million unemployed. The Times headline 21st January 1972
I am the one in ten
A number on a list
I am the one in ten
Even though I don’t exist
Nobody knows me
Even though I’m always there
A statistic, a reminder
Of a world that doesn’t care … UB40, I Am a One in Ten
The rate of unemployment remains significantly higher than a year ago. Tonight: Why Isn’t Britain Working? ITV 2012
At duty, more than I could frame employment,
That numberless upon me stuck, as leaves
Do on the oak, have with one winter’s brush
Fell from their boughs, and left me open, bare
For every storm that blows. William Shakespeare, Timon of Athens IV iii @263, Timon
Perhaps we can get on with the nasty business of the unemployment statistics. Spitting Image s1e3, Mrs Thatcher to Cabinet, ITV 1984
If the unemployed are hungry, why don’t they eat their own bodies? All that good meat going to waste – it makes me mad. Spitting Image s1e6, Mrs Thatcher
Mr Wogan, I’m afraid we’ve refused your application for unemployment benefit on the grounds that you are completely unemployable. Spitting Image s12e5, ITV 1992
What punishment are we meeting out to the scroungers and wastrels of this country? John Sergeant Meets Rab C Nesbitt, BBC 2014
And they don’t come much meeker than me, boy. ibid. Rab
I’m never sober enough to tally up. ibid. Rab to Doctor
Some people call you a feckless prat, don’t they? ibid. John Sergeant to Rab