Work programme is a miserable failure for South Yorkshire

Figures released today show that the Government’s Work Programme is failing to get local people back to work in Rotherham and Barnsley.

National figures show the scheme has got only 2.3 per cent, or two in every hundred, applicants into jobs.

In Rotherham and Barnsley it is around 3 per cent.

Local MP John Healey said:

“Today’s figures reveal the Work Programme is comprehensively failing the people of South Yorkshire.

“The government’s flagship scheme is getting just 3.4 per cent of applicants in Wentworth & Dearne back to work – their programme is doing even worse than if they had done nothing.

“Meanwhile there are 910 people in the constituency who have been out of work for more than a year, and 6.4 claimants chasing every vacancy. This government is letting local people down.

“The time has come for decisive action. George Osborne must now take the big steps Labour propose to drive down unemployment and start with a big plan to get our young people into work.”

Ed Miliband MP, Leader of the Labour Party, said:

“Today we’ve learnt that the Work Programme turns out to be a miserable failure. It’s just not working.

“It’s not working because over the first year of the Work Programme just over two in every hundred people have been getting a job.

“And estimates are that if the Work Programme didn’t exist five in every hundred would be getting a job.

“Why isn’t the Work Programme working? Because to reform welfare, which is what everyone wants to see, you’ve got to have government and people playing their respective roles, shouldering their responsibilities. A One Nation approach.

“We’ve said in relation to young people, we shouldn’t be letting then languish out of work, we should be getting them jobs.

“We should be working with employers and saying government will pay the wages, if you pay the training and mobilise business across this country to get our young people working again.

“That’s the way we can really reform welfare, pulling together as One Nation and each taking and delivering on our responsibilities.

“What we’ve seen from this Government today is a failure to reform welfare. Welfare bills are going up not down, not because of generosity in relation to welfare from this Government, but because their plans aren’t working.”