Gordon Brown calls on experts to help preserve jobs and skills

Gordon Brown will call on employment experts and industry representatives today to help him tackle growing numbers of job cuts across the UK.

The prime minister has summoned leading thinkers from the CBI and the British Chambers of Commerce, as well as the general secretaries of the TUC and Unison, to present ideas on job creation and preservation at a jobs summit on Monday 12 January.

John Philpott, chief economist at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, who will also be attending, said the summit would set the stage for the entire recession rather than just 2009. But he warned it would not be without its drawbacks.

“There’ll be an effort made to get unions and employers singing from the same hymn sheet about jobs and skills, but this could cause people to interpret the recession as being worse than it really is,” he said.

Brendan Barber, TUC general secretary, said he would suggest Brown revises rules that prevent some people who are studying more than 16 hours per week from receiving unemployment benefits.

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