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Tuesday, 2 August 2011

David Cameron Admits Job Programmes 'Aren't Working'

Nearly 2.5 million 16 to 24-year-olds are out of work, according to the latest official figures.

It's the highest number of jobless young people since records began in the early 90s.

One youth charity says there are now enough young unemployed people to fill every football stadium in the Premier League, with almost 200,000 left queuing outside.

We've been to the Cabinet Office at Number 10 Downing Street putting your worries about joblessness to the prime minister.

PM: "These are bad figures. Youth unemployment has been going up for the last 10 years in good years and bad."

NEWSBEAT: "You're in charge now though."

PM: "Absolutely and we have to take a really deep look at what's been going wrong.

"I think it's partly the welfare system that doesn't encourage people into work.

"The work programmes we've been running have been churning people through a programme but not getting them a proper job.

"And frankly, education hasn't been good enough. Now what are we going to do about it?"

NEWSBEAT: "One thing you've done is you've cut the Future Jobs Fund..."

PM: "The Future Jobs Fund was one of the most ineffective jobs funds there have been. It cost five times as much as other schemes."

NEWSBEAT: "Before the election you said it was a good thing."

PM: "Well, I've looked at the figures now, and in some cities only 3% of the jobs were actually in the private sector.

"The really damning evidence is it's a six month programme but one month after the programme half the people on it were back on the dole. It failed, it didn't work."

David Cameron's also been telling Newsbeat about his plans for school-leavers in their holidays.

He wants 11,000 people doing their GCSEs this summer to sign up on Facebook for a two month stint of community service and outdoor activities in the summer.

School-leavers in Birmingham weren't sure about the idea, saying things like: "Eight weeks is a really long time," "I want to enjoy my summer - go on holiday. This is just something I just wouldn't do - ever."

But the Prime Minister told Newsbeat: "This is an exciting challenge. This is one period in your life where you go out, leave your home environment, mix with different people and do something different."

"I pretty much bet you," he added "that young people will come forward in huge numbers and do it, and enjoy it".

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