asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will institute a scheme for trained young people who still cannot get employment after qualifying whereby their unemployment benefit is paid to an employer who agrees to take them on for a period.
I thank my right hon. Friend for his reply and my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister for her initiatives. Does my right hon. Friend agree that many skilled young people cannot get employment because they do not have experience and employers will not take them on? Would not my suggestion give them that experience? Would it not take them off the dole queues at the same time? Would not that be achieved at no cost to the Exchequer?
I think that there would be some cost to the Exchequer. It is a modified form of my hon. Friend's scheme that the Prime Minister announced yesterday. We are giving further consideration to the Layard proposals and the Reading proposals. There are certain disadvantages in the proposals that have to be overcome.
The Prime Minister announced a new Speenhamland system yesterday that turns on a maximum wage of £40 a week, of which the Government will pay £15. What guarantees are there that will prevent an unscrupulous set of employers from setting on young people in receipt of wages of less than £40 a week and at some later stage sacking some adults?