HC Deb 11 July 1988 vol 137 cc38-9W
Mr. Alton

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the implementation of the employment training scheme in Merseyside.

Mr. Nicholls

Over 16,000 places under the new programme employment training have been allocated by the Training Commission to help unemployed people in Merseyside. Proposals have now been received from organisations which wish to take part as training managers offering to provide considerably more places than are required. I regret that some trade unions locally seek to misrepresent the objectives and conditions of the new programme. I also deplore the decision of Liverpool city council to withdraw grants and the use of premises from local organisations which become involved in employment training. Some 1,500 places on existing projects in the community may be at risk because of Liverpool city council's short-sighted action. Despite the city council's unwillingness to help long-term unemployed people to improve their chances of a job or self-employment, I am confident that we will be able to launch employment training successfully in September in Merseyside as in the rest of the country. The Government are determined that unemployed people should get the best help we can provide. Our new programme will do just that.