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Assembly called for work experience programme

The London Assembly today called on the Mayor to bring in measures to monitor the effectiveness of two work experience programmes after it emerged that just 4,800 out of 136,120 unemployed Londoners referred to one scheme got long-term jobs.

A motion agreed at today’s Assembly meeting said the Mayor’s plans for a performance management framework for the Government’s Work Programme were dropped and a work experience pilot involving the Greater London Authority has no rating or performance systems in place.

The Assembly also noted that the Work Programme and the new GLA work experience pilot are mandatory and were concerned that this could backfire by making participants feel punished and resentful. 

Assembly Members called on the Mayor to introduce safeguards to monitor the success of the Work Programme and his own work experience pilot. They also called on him to make his scheme voluntary and allow participants to choose roles that will most benefit them.

Jenny Jones AM, who proposed the motion, said:

“What I am concerned about are unemployed people being messed around by bad policies. The Government's own evidence shows the Work Programme doesn't work and its monitoring and performance management processes aren’t up to scratch.

“The Mayor should bring back his own safeguards to ensure Londoners aren’t messed around on any work programme. I am also concerned that the Mayor wants to take away young people’s social security if they don’t take up his work experience, despite evidence showing this backfires. The Mayor must make the scheme voluntary.”

Fiona Twycross AM, who seconded the motion, said:

“I don’t disagree with the principle that those who can work should work, but the issue for young Londoners is a lack of opportunity, not a lack of motivation. 

“I agree with the need to give people skills and help to get into work, but the Mayor's mandatory scheme ignores all the evidence about what works and is more about being tough on school leavers than helping them get on the employment ladder.”   

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