Secretarial Jobs Board

Half a million jobs available

10/12/2008

The work and pensions secretary James Purnell has said there are half a million jobs available, for those prepared to work.

The minister announced changes to the benefit system, which will soon demand many unemployed people take up some sort of work.

"We think it is the right thing to do to expect people to be doing something in return for their benefits," he said.

Under new proposals, the government's range of benefits will be reviewed and almost all current claimants will have to look harder for work, or lose their benefits.

Mr Purnell noted that at a time of economic uncertainty "we are certainly not wasting taxpayers' money on people who are playing the system, but most of all we are not wasting people's talents".

His plans were not met with universal support, however. Shadow work and pensions secretary Chris Grayling said the benefit system had created "generations of the same family trapped in a dependency culture".

"Britain is now a country where it is more and more difficult for young people to do better than their parents did," he added.

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