Committee seeks Minister’s response to Work Programme concerns

07 February 2011

Potential gap in welfare-to-work provision risks disrupting services for unemployed people

The Chair of the Work and Pensions Committee, Dame Anne Begg, has written to the Minister for Employment to seek an urgent response to concerns about the transition arrangements for the Government’s Work Programme.

In oral evidence to the Committee on 2 February, witnesses representing organisations bidding to provide employment programmes for the Government highlighted a potential gap in welfare-to-work provision which is likely to arise between the termination by April 2011 of many existing programmes and the launch of the Work Programme in June 2011. The letter asks the Minister to confirm the actions the Department for Work and Pensions will undertake to ensure that:

  • clients who are receiving welfare-to-work services continue to receive effective support across all regions and will not experience significant disruption;
  • organisations which deliver DWP employment-related services are supported during the transition period in terms of maintaining their financial capacity and their ability to retain key staff; and
  • staff working in employment-related services receive the information they need to plan for the transition period and ensure that their organisation is able to play an effective role within the Work Programme.

Download the Chair’s letter (PDF PDF 34 KB) to the Rt Hon Chris Grayling MP, Minister for Employment.

A transcript of the oral evidence taken on 2 February is available.

The Minister’s response will be published on the Committee’s website once received. This exchange of correspondence is part of the Committee’s ongoing inquiry into the Work Programme: providers and contracting arrangements.

The Minister for Employment will provide oral evidence to the Committee in relation to this inquiry on 14 March 2011. 

Image: PA

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