THE number of people claiming Universal Credit (UC) in Moray went down slightly over the month of October.
Latest figures from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) have revealed that 6804 people were claiming UC, down 10 on the previous month.
However, the trend has not been repeated at the national level where the figures jumped from 471,363 to 474,229 last month.
There was good news on a number of fronts for young people searching for a job in Moray, as Forres-based DWP employer and partnership manager Jane Munro explained.
“We are working closely with locals Kickstart gateway who will be helping employers get a Kickstart Scheme grant,” she continued.
“The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to create new job placements for 16-to-24-year-olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long term unemployment. We’ve recently had Tesco advertise vacancies for Kickstart with customers moving into those roles in the next couple of weeks.
“An Expanded Youth Offer to support 18-to-24-year-olds will include a 13-week programme and once completed participants will be encouraged to take up work related training or an apprenticeship and further support will be provided through Youth Employment Coaches and Youth Hubs based in the community.
“We’re increasing participation in our sector-based work academies programmes, aiming to support 40,000 jobseekers to get the right skills for the roles that are on offer.
“The Job Help and Employer Help portals continue to be updated and carry lots of supportive information. These websites are to support Jobseekers find work in new sectors and generally looking for work now.
“The Job Help website also has articles, tips and guides to help people who are able and willing to take up roles now in sectors which are expanding rapidly to keep Britain working. It also has some local content available which might be useful for customers across Moray.
Minister for Employment Mims Davies MP stressed the latest figures pointed to a “challenging time” for families across the country as Covid continues to impact the labour market.
She said: “Through our Plan for Jobs we have a relentless focus on protecting, supporting and creating jobs and we continue to help people of all ages into work.
“We’re doubling the number of work coaches across our jobcentres with 4500 already taking up posts, our £2 billion Kickstart scheme is under way with the first recruits starting last week. We continue to take the necessary action to save jobs and protect livelihoods as our response to coronavirus evolves, which is why we’ve extended furlough and SEISS.
“Work Coaches are at the forefront of our national recovery and will be there for jobseekers striving to get back on their feet.
“From setting young people up with their first jobs to helping others retrain and find fresh opportunity in new industries, their support will help drive Britain’s recovery.”
For more about any aspect of Universal Credit, including how to make a claim, visit Understanding Universal Credit.
Help for people and businesses affected by futher Convid-19 lockdowns can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/news/job-support-scheme-expanded-to-firms-required-to-close-due-to-covid-restrictions
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme guidance is available at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wages-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme
Having trouble getting out to pick up your weekly newspaper?
Get a digital copy of the Northern Scot delivered straight to your inbox every week and read the full newspaper on your desktop, phone or laptop.