The tragic suicide of a jobless Bury gardener who became ‘demoralised’ by his visits to the job centre shows the toll unemployment takes on mental health, according to a youth charity.
YouthNet believes the death of 20-year-old Martin Hadfield highlights an alarming trend of young unemployed people with mental health problems.
Martin was so keen to get a job he refused to claim any welfare hand-outs and applied for 40 posts in the space of three months.
But he failed to get responses on almost every application after being ‘undercut’ on wages by younger and more inexperienced candidates.
And just 24 hours after a meeting where job centre staff invited him to a follow up meeting, Martin was found hanged at his flat in Tottington, near Bury, Greater Manchester.
CEO of YouthNet, Emma Thomas, said: “I was shocked and saddened to read about the tragic suicide of Martin Hadfield. It sadly reinforces evidence showing the alarming impact unemployment can have on young people’s mental health.
“It’s positive that in recent years, there’s been initiatives to get young people into work, but in parallel, we need to ensure young people get emotional support to enable them to cope, be resilient in work and know that in those dark moments when they feel alone, they can access support that can provide a lifeline.”
YouthNet is a digital charity that are focused on harnessing technology to reduce the one million children that are not in education and help the one in twelve children who attempt self-harm.
Each month more than 85,000 16-25-year-olds in the UK use YouthNet’s digital service as a way of coping with mental health issues and loneliness.
Mrs Thomas added: “We provide a powerful opportunity that’s available whenever and wherever young people need it, so that we can prevent tragedies like Martin’s.
“YouthNet is a charity that’s committed to this and in turn, helping make a difference to young people’s lives.”
Martin, originally from Greenoch Scotland, left school with GCSEs and after helping his stepfather valet cars got a job as a landscape gardener and achieved NVQ qualifications.
But in April last year he lost his job due to the firm down-sizing.
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