Jobcentres: South East Cornwall

Work and Pensions – in the House of Commons at on 13 May 2024.

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Photo of Sheryll Murray Sheryll Murray Conservative, South East Cornwall

What steps his Department is taking to increase the support available in jobcentres in South East Cornwall constituency.

Photo of Jo Churchill Jo Churchill The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions

My hon. Friend will know that her local jobcentres are doing a good job of helping people find and progress in work in her area, driving the recruitment of seasonal workers and creating exciting partnerships with employers such as Morrisons.

Photo of Sheryll Murray Sheryll Murray Conservative, South East Cornwall

With your permission, Mr Speaker, I would like to put on record my condolences to the family and many friends of my immediate predecessor Colin Breed, who sadly passed away last Thursday.

Under the Conservatives, we have near record levels of payrolled employment and I regularly hear from employers that they cannot get the staff needed. Last month’s House of Commons Library paper on people claiming unemployment benefits stated that 1,405 people were doing so in my constituency. What more can the Department do to make sure that the unemployed are ready to fit into vacancies as they arise by looking at what local businesses need?

Photo of Jo Churchill Jo Churchill The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions

I am sure I speak for the whole House when I join my hon. Friend in sending our condolences to the family and friends of her predecessor.

Our employment relation teams are working hard with local employers to match customers to the vacancies in my hon. Friend’s businesses. We are building skills, working with sector-based work academy programmes and boot camps, supporting people with a generous increased childcare offer of up to £1,000 for one child and £1,700 for two, and helping people with access to travel. For those on the health journey, later this year we will roll out our WorkWell programme across England, including in areas in the south-west.

Photo of Ronnie Cowan Ronnie Cowan Scottish National Party, Inverclyde

On specific days, jobcentres have been closed due to ongoing industrial action. Can the Minister assure me that anybody who misses an appointment due to that action will not be sanctioned?

Photo of Jo Churchill Jo Churchill The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions

We will always take a reasonable view and make sure that unavoidable circumstances such as those the hon. Gentleman speaks of will be taken into account when talking to customers.