§ Mr. George Rodgers
asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he is now able to make a statement on the decentralisation of responsibility for employment and training to the Secretaries of State for Scotland and Wales.
§ Mr. Booth
In our White Paper "Our Changing Democracy: Devolution to Scotland and Wales" we affirmed our intention to allocate important new responsibilities to the Secretaries of State for Scotland and Wales. One of these was responsibility for the activities in Scotland and Wales for the Manpower Services Commission, the Training Services Agency and the Employment Service Agency. It was suggested that, within the requirements of a single labour market, this transfer would help these bodies to give full emphasis to special local conditions.
In the light of the comments received in the White Paper the Government have now decided to implement the proposal to decentralise these employment and training responsibilities. We shall be consulting the Manpower Services Commission and other interested bodies on the detailed arrangements for the transfer of these responsibilities with a view to making the changes at the earliest possible opportunity. The Government will also be consulting the education authorities about the detailed arrangements for the decentralisation of responsibility for the careers service.