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New Head of New Deal Task Force


Sandy Leitch, Chief Executive of Zurich Financial Services, has been appointed to head the New Deal Task Force. He succeeds the current chairman, Sir Peter Davis, Group Chief Executive of Sainsbury's, who is standing down after three years in the post. The announcement was made today by the Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown and the Secretary of State for Education and Employment David Blunkett.

Welcoming Mr Leitch's appointment, Mr Blunkett said. "The New Deal Task Force has played an important role in helping us deliver the lowest figures for youth unemployment for a quarter of a century and real opportunities for thousands of young people. The Task Force,s invaluable work has been driven by the hard work and commitment of Sir Peter Davis and I would like to thank him on behalf of the Government for his achievements.

"I am pleased to welcome the arrival of Sandy Leitch as the new Chairman of the Task Force. As we approach our manifesto target of 250,000 young people into work, I look forward to working with him on the development of New Deal and to drawing upon his tremendous business track record, personal values and involvement with Government on community based projects."

Sandy Leitch said, "I believe passionately that everyone deserves the opportunity to realise their full potential. The New Deal has offered hope to thousands of people across the UK and made a real difference to their lives. It's a programme that is benefiting both people seeking work as well as employers across the country. I look forward to linking this important Government programme still closer with UK business and to playing a leading role in its future."


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