Government invests £32m to give local areas greater control over provisions for cutting jobless figures

The government has announced a £32m scheme to give 15 local areas more control over plans to tackle ‘worklessness’.

The 15 areas have been granted cities strategy pathfinder status and will play a role in government’s flagship Pathways to Work programme, according to work and pensions secretary, John Hutton.

The aim of the project is to help people off incapacity benefit, by improving data-sharing among jobcentres, local authorities and any other agencies involved in getting people into work and to ensure such agencies have a greater influence on the provision of training opportunities and employment programmes at a local level.

Hutton said: “We launched the cities strategy because local people and local groups know best how to tackle the problems of worklessness in their area. Devolving more control to cities and local areas so they can work in partnership with government is crucial to doing that.”

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