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New statistical publications provide latest data on Bailiwick life, wellbeing and economy

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Monday 10 January 2022

The States of Guernsey are publishing a number of statistical reports today as part of their ongoing work to provide high quality data on a wide range of issues related to Bailiwick life, wellbeing and the economy.

These statistical publications are apolitical and presented in neutral terms, without commentary about what actions could, or should, be taken by the States of Guernsey to address the issues arising from the data. However, they do provide the States and the wider community with the data and insights to inform priorities and assist decision making.  The reports published are:

The reports between them provide an update on how the past two years has impacted the lives of Islanders, with the pandemic playing a very significant role. They also reflect some of the ways in which the Bailiwick has been more resilient than many other jurisdictions.  That includes the resilience shown in terms of Islanders' wellbeing because, while many have experienced difficult times during the pandemic, the Community Survey findings also show that across all factors many people have described their wellbeing as the same or better compared to before the pandemic.

The Guernsey Economic and Financial Stability Overview 2021 shows that the economic impact of the pandemic in 2020 and 2021 was less severe than initially feared, and unemployment has returned to a level similar to that before the pandemic. However, the findings of the Bailiwick of Guernsey Community Survey 2021 indicate that while many islanders are resilient, the pandemic has affected some people's life satisfaction negatively and may have emphasised social and economic inequities. Housing affordability stands out as a factor that is featuring across all of these reports.

Deputy Peter Ferbrache, President of the Policy & Resources Committee said

"These reports help give us a clearer picture of what is happening in our community, although to a large extent the problems that the reports highlight are those that we're aware of and are actively working to address. 

They are complex inter-connected problems that need to be addressed together with a mix of solutions to tackle the root causes.  This is already clear through the work on the tax review, the work of the housing action group, and the Population and Immigration Policy Review.

It's for that reason that we're going to great lengths to coordinate the work of government this term, through the Government Work Plan.  That Plan reflects the community's priorities, such as the affordability of housing, and the emotional and mental health and wellbeing of Islanders."

Deputy Heidi Soulsby, Vice-President of the Policy & Resources Committee said

"When I last updated the States on the progress of the Government Work Plan in December, I referred to some of the new initiatives the States of Guernsey have begun in the last six months to address the issues we're seeing, including those reflected in the latest statistical publications.  These include investing in a pilot scheme to improve adult literacy and numeracy skills, a 'drop-in' crisis support centre for people experiencing mental and emotional difficulties, and the recent purchase of a significant land parcel with a Development Framework in place to accelerate the provision of new housing stock. 

We are also concerned that inequality has been exacerbated by the pandemic, both in terms of income generally but also for many young people who may have been disproportionately impacted by the disruption caused to lives over the last 2 years."

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