British long-term unemployment has skyrocketed to more than 400,000 which is unprecedented since 1997, the results of a survey show.
That puts the number of people who have not been working for at least two years at more than double the figure when the recession began in 2008, Britain's leading progressive think tank Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) said.
According to IPPR, some 100,000 over-50-year-old people who have been without a job since the economic crisis began risk early retirement with a lower pension as they would have no other alternative.
The think tank said the number of 18 to 24-year-old people out of employment since 2008 has increased almost three-fold from 36,000 to 95,000.
The study also warned that the coming 12 months will see a further rise in the number of those out of work for over two years as the government pushes ahead with its spending cuts and employers offer fewer vacancies.
The IPPR also found that the cuts in the public sector spending will hit women the worst in the coming years, .
"The longer someone is out of work, the more they lose motivation and confidence. They also miss out on vital training and work experience,” IPPR's chief economist Tony Dolphin said.
"This means that even when employment starts to pick up again, they will find it hard to compete with other jobseekers and could find themselves permanently shut out of the jobs market," he further warned.
The IPPR said the government should raise employment rate from the current 70 percent towards 80 percent if it wants to prevent people from “permanently drifting away” from the Labor market.
Employment Minister Chris Grayling has blamed the situation on “the chronic failure of the welfare system” the government inherited from former Labour administrations.