HC Deb 16 December 1986 vol 107 c522W
60. Mr. Raynsford

asked the Paymaster General what steps he is taking to deal with the problems of unemployment in west London.

Mr. Lee

On 9 October I announced four new initiatives which will benefit the unemployed in west London and elsewhere. Ealing is a pilot area for two of these initiatives. The job training scheme and the extended restart programme, which will help those who have been unemployed for over six months. I also announced an increase in the number of jobclubs nationally, and by the end of March 1987 there will be 11 jobclubs in west London. We have also relaxed the rules of the enterprise allowance scheme to allow unemployed people to start businesses under franchise operations. Additionally, in north Kensington, an inner city task force aims to develop new approaches to local job creation and enterprise.

We will continue to provide practical help to the unemployed through our employment and training measures, such as the restart and community programmes—our major schemes to help the long-term unemployed. However, the main impact on unemployment must come from employers and those who decide to work for themselves, through their drive towards competitiveness and increased flexibility. Greater moderation in wage settlements will also help to provide more jobs in west London. Our economic strategy is designed to create an enterprising economy which will support sustained growth and rising employment.