TUC welcomes step-change in unemployment policy

The
TUC has welcomed a government drive to tackle long-term unemployment.

Responding
to the announcement of six pilot areas for the Government’s Step-UP scheme
today, TUC General Secretary John Monks, said: "The New Deal and other
government programmes have been very successful at helping unemployed people to
get the jobs being created by a successful economy. The trouble is that, in
high-unemployment areas, there simply aren’t the jobs for long-term unemployed
people to move into.

"For
many long-term unemployed people this will be their first chance to work in a
real job, offering real wages, not a make-work scheme. So StepUP really is a
step-change in government policy and an important phase in the drive towards
full employment in every region."

The
pilots announced today are in Cardiff, Sheffield, Sunderland, Lambeth, Oldham
and East Ayrshire. These will be followed by a further 14 pilots across
England, Scotland and Wales between June and December.

By Quentin Reade

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