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Important changes to New Deal: “Millennium Jobs Promise”


DfEe Press Release, 15 November 99

A Millennium bonus for unemployed people was announced today by Education and Employment Secretary David Blunkett. A new ‘Millennium Jobs Promise’ will make it easier for the young unemployed to take short term Millennium jobs, without losing the chance of help and support under the New Deal.

Mr Blunkett said:
"This Millennium Jobs Promise will cut through the red tape by ensuring that those taking temporary jobs do not have to go back to square one to access New Deal jobs, training or advice. My changes mean that a young person taking a temporary job over the Millennium period will not have to wait a further six months to join the New Deal, if they become jobless.

"This initiative is a one-off measure in response to the large number of temporary jobs expected to be created. It will apply only to those starting temporary work in November or December.

"I am also extending the Millennium Jobs Promise to older workers. Those in the pilot areas for New Deal 25 plus and New Deal 50 plus will also enjoy the same early entry to New Deal, if they have taken on temporary Millennium work.

"I am pleased to have enabled unemployed people of all ages to gain valuable experience by taking on temporary jobs generated by the Millennium holiday period. This will boost their long term employment prospects, without excluding them from the crucial support offered by the New Deal. The New Deal, through which 145,000 people have found work, has contributed to the lowest level of youth unemployment for 23 years.

"This change will also make a contribution to damping down temporary pressure on wage levels, thereby helping the economy as a whole. At the same time, it will also assist with greater adaptability and flexibility within the labour market, which would have been adversely affected by the perverse incentive which would have occurred had those taking temporary work disqualified themselves from New Deal help."


1. Under existing regulations, a young person becomes eligible for New Deal help only after six months on Jobseekers’ Allowance. If they take up temporary work and become jobless, the six month period would start again.

2. Today’s announcement means that a young person who takes a temporary job (up to three months) over the New Year period will still remain eligible to enter New Deal six months after they first sign on.


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