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  1. National

Labour's jobs benefit pledge

Labour has pledged jobs for every unemployed person over 25 and out of work for more than two years, which they must take up for six months or lose benefits. It will be paid for by a cut in pension tax relief for top earners

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Balls: 'Take up jobs or lose benefits'

A One Nation approach to welfare reform means government has a responsibility to help people into work and support those who cannot, but those who can work must be required to take up jobs or lose benefits as a result – no ifs or buts.

Tackling long-term unemployment will be a top priority for the next Labour government because we know from the 1980s that it has a scarring effect on individuals and communities, damages our economy and society, and builds up long-term costs for the taxpayer.

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