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Results 1-20 of 224 for in the 'Westminster Hall debates' speaker:Esther McVey

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Dobbin, and to reply to the hon. Member for Copeland (Mr Reed). I congratulate him on securing the debate. I have listened closely to all that he has said, so I will answer all the points he has raised. It is important to put the situation into context. When the Government came into office, it was clear that the welfare system we...

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: I am putting the situation in context and showing how many of the figures that the hon. Gentleman cited were inaccurate. I am putting into context why and how we are doing things. Today, the most recent employment statistics have been published. The aim of all our benefit changes has been to liberate people and help them to get into work, and today we have seen a record rate of people getting...

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: I will give way to the hon. Gentleman if he will provide some facts rather than fantasy.

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: I was in Cumbria only a week or two ago, discussing those things. I get out regularly and speak to people right across the country, many of whom have told me how they had been abandoned on long-term unemployment, but not any more. Many of them have been on the Work programme and they have now got a job. About 5 million people have been through the Work programme and 300,000 have got sustained...

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: There have always been people in work who find things hard. The figures I read out have significantly reduced under this Government. The process, ideology and thought behind universal credit is to ensure that work pays and that every extra hour worked pays, rather than having cliff edges as we had under the old system with which the hon. Gentleman was happy to live. People did not know...

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: The chap obviously wants to write a press release—he wants to write something that is not true—to put in his local papers. Competence is not an issue. We have introduced some of the biggest ever welfare changes. We know they are working, because the things that the hon. Gentleman and his party talked about, such as double-dip and triple-dip recessions, never happened. They talked...

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: Most people’s motivation is for the best and is to support people—

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: Hang on a second. People produce figures that have not been fully authorised, cleared or passed off. Our figures have to go through the National Audit Office and independent bodies such as the International Labour Organisation because their estimation of what has happened are much more thorough and valid. Estimates based on very small samples may be right, but they can be distorted by the...

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: No, I will not give way at the moment. We have talked about why the spare room subsidy was introduced—

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: The hon. Gentleman wants to call it by another name. I am happy to call it by either name, but in statute it is the removal of the spare room subsidy. [Interruption.] The hon. Gentleman is smiling, so he obviously realises that his own party introduced it for the private rented sector in 2008. Indeed, his party was going to introduce it for the social rented sector, as we have read in...

Welfare Reform (Cumbria) (16 July 2014)

Esther McVey: I am in order. I have given the employment stats for what is going on in the constituency of the hon. Member for Copeland, and I have spoken clearly about what is happening in his jobcentres. We are now talking clearly about what is going on in his constituency with the spare room subsidy. I am saying why those decisions were taken, because I cannot give a specific answer unless people know...

[Mr David Amess in the Chair] — Jobcentre Plus (10 July 2014)

Esther McVey: It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Amess, as everybody has said. I thank the Select Committee on Work and Pensions for its work on the report that we have been discussing. The Government welcome the Committee’s endorsement of the role of Jobcentre Plus in a reformed welfare system. Through the recession and into the period of recovery, it has provided good value for...

[Mr David Amess in the Chair] — Jobcentre Plus (10 July 2014)

Esther McVey: If the hon. Lady had looked at the youth unemployment figures, she would welcome them as much as I have. We have had nine consecutive months of decreasing unemployment, and the figure is now nearly 100,000 lower than at the general election. We have given significant focus and support. We have put in place a youth contract that helps people with work experience—I am delighted that...

[Mr David Amess in the Chair] — Jobcentre Plus (10 July 2014)

Esther McVey: We have done a considerable amount of work and we continue to do so. That is key and should be welcomed. Youth unemployment has fallen across the country.

[Mr David Amess in the Chair] — Jobcentre Plus (10 July 2014)

Esther McVey: We know that at the heart of the Government’s plan is the desire to build a stronger, more competitive economy.

[Mr David Amess in the Chair] — Jobcentre Plus (10 July 2014)

Esther McVey: I will give way in a moment, but I want to ensure that we hear what Jobcentre Plus is actually delivering, which is a significant amount. I want people to understand how the more than 26,000 jobcentre staff are helping people and how many people come through the doors each day.

[Mr David Amess in the Chair] — Jobcentre Plus (10 July 2014)

Esther McVey: I will give the right hon. Gentleman greater clarification: that was at the very start of the scheme in June 2011, but the report says that, given the way performance has increased and what would be expected by the end of the programme, it would be 17% better than the pathways to work programme.

[Mr David Amess in the Chair] — Jobcentre Plus (10 July 2014)

Esther McVey: If the right hon. Gentleman looks into all the footnotes, everything associated and all the figures about what is expected by the end of the programme, he will find the numbers I cited. I can get the report out and go through it—I know that he has been flicking quickly to various points on his iPad, but I can give the full report because I went through it in quite some detail. We are...

[Mr David Amess in the Chair] — Jobcentre Plus (10 July 2014)

Esther McVey: I am afraid that, because the right hon. Gentleman has just walked into the debate as I am giving my closing speech and has not heard from other Members, I cannot give way. There is only a limited amount of time, and since it is a three-hour debate, I have many questions to answer. We have seen the complete modernisation of the Jobcentre Plus system. The system has been personalised and...

[Mr David Amess in the Chair] — Jobcentre Plus (10 July 2014)

Esther McVey: I appreciate the hon. Lady’s request, but she has just taken the question from the right hon. Member for Birkenhead (Mr Field). I will not be taking questions until I have finished responding to everything. I appreciate what she is doing, but I will continue. We are also increasing technology: we will be delivering wi-fi across all jobcentres, with 6,000 new access devices. All that is...

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