Benefit Take-up

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Work and Pensions – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 15th October 2001.

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Photo of Ian McCartney Ian McCartney Minister for pensions, Department for Work and Pensions 2:30 pm, 15th October 2001

If that is the hon. Gentleman's job application to the new leader of his party, I will take it up on his behalf.

The Government are very committed to working with employers to eradicate age discrimination. We will legislate by 2006 to prevent such discrimination in the workplace. In the meantime, through our code of practice and the national "Age Positive" campaign, which works with employers, significant numbers of older workers are returning to the work force for the first time in many years. A range of employers who would normally make workers redundant because of their age are changing their practice. In addition, advertisements that discriminate on the basis of age have almost disappeared. We have given employers a warning that there is only a short time before such adverts cannot be used.

I hope that the hon. Gentleman does find a place on the Conservative Front Bench before he reaches the age of 75. If he has not done so by 2006, he will be able to use legislation introduced by this Government to do something about it.