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More statistics to support the New Deal – but what’s the reality?


The government have produced new figures to support what it views as the ongoing success of the New Deal programme.

The Department for Education and Employment is pointing to research carried out by the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) on the first two years of New Deal (April 98 to March 2000), which finds that long-term youth unemployment would be twice as high if the New Deal for Young People had not been introduced.

The report also concludes that the economy is richer by half a billion pounds a year thanks to the New Deal, which the government is using as evidence that the programme is easily paying for itself.

Mr Blunkett said: "This report underlines the key contribution of New Deal to the economy and this Government’s investment in turning our wasted youth into working youth. Its valuable findings will add to our continual analysis of New Deal and help us develop the programme further."

Employment Minister Tessa Jowell added: "New Deal has achieved the Government’s manifesto pledge to help 250,000 young people off benefit and into work, as well as virtually eliminating long-term youth unemployment. The report also confirms that the net cost to the Government of £150 million a year translates into a cost per extra person in work a year of £4,000 or £7,000 excluding those on the environmental and voluntary options. The report says that there are 25,000 more people in work and 40,000 fewer young people unemployed at any one time. Youth unemployment is now at its lowest level since the mid-seventies."

TrainingZONE says: Another month, more New Deal statistics, but it's hard not to be cynical when the DfEE publishes a constant stream of upbeat press releases on the subject. It doesn't help that the statistics aren't easily accessible on the NIESR website to be examined in detail - statistics are always open to interpretation...


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