HC Deb 16 February 1994 vol 237 cc827-8W
Mr. Leighton

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what the money aimed at long-term unemployment from the EC structural funds will be spent on.

Mr. Michael Forsyth

EC assistance for the long-term unemployed is provided by the European social fund under objective 3 (which also covers several other priority groups). Following the adoption in July 1993 of new structural fund regulations for the period 1994–1999, a plan on the proposed use of objective 3 funds in Great Britain over that period was submitted to the EC Commission at the beginning of November; the Commission has not yet given a formal response.

The plan recognises that as the needs of the long-term unemployed vary, a range of provision is required, including work experience vocational training, job search facilities, and advice on job-finding and interview techniques. The aim will be to raise the skill levels, motivation and confidence of long-term unemployed people to enable them to compete more effectively in the labour market and to find and retain jobs.