Friday, January 11, 2008

John Baron MP: Welfare reform needed to tackle long-term poverty

MP backs plans to help people get back to work in Billericay and District

John Baron MP today added his support for calls to reduce long-term welfare dependency, tackle long-term poverty and re-create stable families. The policy ideas entitled “Work for Welfare” were launched by Conservative leader, David Cameron. They aim to help people find fulfilling jobs, while continuing to support those who genuinely cannot work. Currently across Billericay and District, there are 3,550 people on Incapacity Benefit and 970 on Jobseeker’s Allowance.

John said:
Labour’s old politics on welfare reform simply are not working. Despite the New Deal costing the taxpayer more than £3 billion, it is has become a revolving door back on to benefits with nearly 50% of young job seekers leaving the New Deal ending up back on benefits within a year. Someone on Incapacity Benefit for more than 2 years is more likely to die or retire than get a job.

People need better opportunities to take responsibility for their own success rather than being dependant on Whitehall handouts. The existing benefits system does not do enough to help people find work. Higher numbers of Incapacity Benefit claimants and high youth unemployment show that the policies of the last ten years have failed.

The Government boasts about the millions of new jobs it has ‘created’. But official statistics clearly show that 4 out of every 5 new jobs have gone to migrant workers in the past ten years despite having nearly 5 million people on out of work benefits.

Real welfare reform will help reverse the disastrous rise in family breakdown under Labour and tackle the persistent and often hidden poverty that shames our nation.
Under the new Conservative proposals:

Respect for those who cannot work: Recipients of Incapacity Benefit who really cannot work will receive continued support and will remain outside the return-to-work process.Employment for those who can.

Employment for those who can: Every out-of-work benefit claimant will be expected to work or prepare for work. There will be a comprehensive programme of support for job seekers including training, development and work experience. Welfare-to-work services will be provided by the private and voluntary sectors on a payment by results basis.

Assessments for those claiming benefits: There will be rapid assessments of all new and existing claimants for out-of-work benefits.

Limits to claiming out of work benefits: People who refuse to join a return-to-work programme will lose the right to claim out-of-work benefits until they do. People who refuse to accept reasonable job offers could lose the right to claim out-of-work benefits.

Community work: Those who claim for more than two years out of three will be required to help out on community work programmes.

End Tax Credit discrimination: The savings from these reforms will be used to end the discrimination against couples in the Tax Credits system.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What about Union membership for unemplyed workers ?