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Few take-up Bradford Council work experience places
10:00am Thursday 10th October 2013 in News
Bradford Council last year offered 193 work experience placements through a Government programme to tackle unemployment – but only 23 were taken up by jobseekers.
New figures show only 11 per cent of the opportunities made available by the authority under the Job Centre Plus Get Britain Working work experience programme were snapped up by unemployed people across the district looking for work.
This is despite the latest statistics from the Department of Work and Pensions showing 5.8 per cent of the local working population are officially job-hunting.
Shipley Conservative MP Philip Davies said it was “extremely disappointing” so few people had taken up the opportunities on offer.
“I don’t know whether it’s a case that people don’t want to do it or they don’t know about it,” he said. “If people don’t know about it, more needs to be done to make them aware because work experience is a crucial part of finding work.”
Bradford East Liberal Democrat MP David Ward said he was “surprised” the placements had not been taken up.
“I don’t know the reason for the failure to take up the opportunities, but we do know that a lack of work experience is often a setback when people are looking for work.
“People often find they can’t get a job until they get some experience, but they can’t get the experience without working. The placements on offer might not necessarily be what a person wants to do, but it can help them show they are willing to work, are punctual, get them a reference and give them confidence.”
Figures released under the Freedom of Information Act show that despite the Council offering 33 placements in its education, employment and enterprise team, none were taken. There were also no takers for the 25 placements on offer in building services, 30 in neighbourhood services, two in its environment and neighbourhood services department and one available in tourism services.
The Council offered 20 placements in its facilities management department, but only one was taken.
However, some placements were popular, with all four spots available filled in the interpretation and translation department. Eight people signed up for the 48 placements available in commercial catering and two of six were taken in the City Hall catering team.
No one from Bradford Council was available to comment yesterday.
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