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Two in five on benefits fail to attend work placements

More than two in five of people in Yorkshire on Job Seeker's Allowance fail to attend work placements and skill training arranged for them, according to figures released today.

Two in five on benefits fail to attend work placements

Claimants in Yorkshire and the Humber have been asked to attend work placements and skills training more than 310,000 times since 2011 to help them get a job. But around 130,000 of these referrals, (42 per cent) have not yet been taken up.

Work coaches identify placements and training which are most appropriate for individuals. These include four week placements with businesses and skill training, both of which must be attended in return for benefits. People who do not attend face having their benefits stopped.

The majority of jobseekers do everything they can to find work - and that’s reflected in the record levels of employment we’re seeing across the country. But there are still many claimants our advisers identify who will benefit from extra support to improve their skills, or who could find their feet by spending a few weeks in a workplace - which is why it’s vital that jobseekers work with us and hold up their end of the bargain.

– Esther McVey, Employment Minister


Brough jobs to go in BAE cuts

Defence group BAE Systems is to cut 440 managerial jobs, including in Brough, as part of an efficiency drive at its military aircraft division.

BAE Systems cut 440 managerial jobs nationwide Credit: Press Association

BAE said the bulk of the proposed cuts will be at two sites in Lancashire, with 286 jobs set to go at Samlesbury and Warton. Other sites affected by the review include locations at Brough, Christchurch, Frimley, RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire and RAF Marham in Norfolk.

The Military Air and Information (MAI) division's programmes include the Eurofighter Typhoon and Hawk Trainer jet.

In 2012 BAE was awarded a contract from the Omani Ministry of Defence to supply 12 Typhoon aircraft and eight Hawk aircraft. The first aircraft deliveries from the £2.5 billion contract are scheduled for 2017.

It is always regrettable when you have to announce potential job losses.

However, we believe that by implementing changes to our management structure we will become a more efficient and effective business, and be better placed to meet the needs of current and potential customers in what is an increasingly competitive market.

We understand that this is a time of uncertainty for our employees and we are committed to working with them and their representatives to explore ways of avoiding and mitigating potential job losses.

– MAI managing director, Chris Boardman

He said the division has a strong order book with Hawk, Typhoon and F-35 in production, alongside extensive and growing in-service support work with the RAF and overseas customers.

Consumers warned of increased energy bills

Consumers are being warned that energy bills will go up because the government rushed into a decision about multi-billion pound renewable energy contracts.

A wind farm off the Yorkshire coast - and a biomass plant at Drax power station - were among those awarded a share of 16 billion pounds of taxpayers' money in December.

But a House of Commons committee says the Department for Energy acted too quickly - and failed to consider whether cheaper green energy projects were available. Michael Billington reports.


Kirklees only region in UK to win Euro money

Kirklees has landed a million Euro prize for an innovative idea to help communities get the most from shared assets.

Huddersfield, Kirklees

Bloomberg Philanthropies has today announced the winners in its 2014 Mayors Challenge, an ideas competition that encourages cities to generate ideas that solve major challenges and improve city life – and that have the potential to spread to other cities.

Kirklees was the only UK area to win one of the prizes.

Barcelona won the 5million Euro prize, but Kirklees was granted 1 million alongside other bids from Athens, Stockholm, and Warsaw.

In simple terms, the Kirklees idea takes assets that are not fully used or completely unused and frees them up for communities to use and share.

Region's unemployment figures revealed

Unemployment in Yorkshire and the Humber fell by 25,000 in the three months to July, official figures have revealed.

Unemployment in Yorkshire and the Humber fell by 25,000 in the three months to July, official figures have revealed. Credit: Press Association

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that a total of 203,000 people were unemployed in the region between May and July.

The region's unemployment rate was 7.3% and saw a fall of 11% during the period. The worst area in the UK was the South West which recorded a 17,000 increase in the number of people without a job.

The number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance has fallen below one million for the first time in six years, new figures showed.

The claimant count fell for the 22nd month in a row in July by 37,200 to 966,500, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

This is the first time the figure has been below one million since September 2008.

The Work and Pensions Secretary Ian Duncan Smith says getting people in to work gives them a better chance:

The jobless total was 2.02 million in the quarter to July, down by 146,000 on February to April, giving a lower-than-expected unemployment rate of 6.2%.

Analysts had forecast an unemployment rate of 6.3%.

The jobless total is now 468,000 fewer than a year earlier, the largest annual fall in unemployment since 1988.

Average earnings including bonuses rose by 0.6% in the year to July, while average earnings excluding bonuses were 0.7% higher.

There are now 30.61 million people in work, 74,000 more than February to April, the smallest quarterly increase since April to June 2013.

The Chancellor added that unemployment in Scotland was down to 6%, below the UK average.

Despite a steady two-year easing of unemployment with record numbers in work, the rise in average earnings is still a long way short of the pace of inflation at 1.5%.

The Bank of England halved its forecast for average wage growth last month, saying it now expects average salaries to rise by 1.25% this year.

Hatfield deal a result of NUM faith in the future of coal in the UK

The National Union of Mineworkers says today's deal which secures the future of Hatfield Colliery for 18 months represents their faith in the future of coal in the UK.

It is thought around 500 jobs have been saved and officials say a new coal face will be opened in the coming months.

General Secretary Chris Kitchen told ITV Calendar that he hoped the deal was a stepping stone to future investment:

Funding saves 500 jobs for 18 months at colliery

Hatfield Colliery say today's announcement of funding from the National Union of Miners will save around 500 jobs until June 2016.

Funding saves 500 jobs for 18 months at colliery Credit: Press Association

An estimated £4 million deal has been agreed which will keep the colliery open and there are plans to open a new coal face in the coming months.

Bosses say they hope this deal will secure them more time to agree a deal which would keep the colliery open beyond 2016.

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