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The social consequences of high unemployment

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Forecasts suggest that unemployment will remain above 2 million in Britain for the best part of the 1980s. The social consequences of protracted high levels of unemployment are explored. The evidence comes from four types of source: cross-sectional surveys of (unemployed) individuals; longitudinal and cohort studies; aggregrate time series; and area-based studies. The advantages and limitations of each are identified. The available evidence on the consequences of unemployment for poverty; health and mortality; mental health; crime and delinquency; and the social fabric is reviewed. The implications for policy and public expenditure are explored.

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