HC Deb 14 March 2001 vol 364 cc608-9W
Mr. Derek Twigg

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what proposals he has to extend the use of work-focused interviews within the Working Age Agency. [153900]

Mr. Darling

My tight hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Education and Employment and I are establishing, later this year, the Working Age Agency. This will bring together labour market and benefit services for people of working age and enable us to provide a more integrated approach for our customers.

As the first stage in the launch of the Working Age Agency, we will be introducing around 50 Pathfinder offices. A provisional list of their locations is set out in the table. People of working age making a claim for benefit in these offices will be required to participate in a work-focused interview as an integral part of the benefit claims process and will be offered specialist support to help them into work. I will shortly be laying regulations under the Welfare Reform and Pensions Act 1999 for this purpose.

WAA Pathfinder sites (provisional)
City/town Number
Greenock 1 1
Port Glasgow 1 1
Livingston 1
City of Aberdeen 3
Bridgend 2
Maesteg 1
Pyle 1
Porthcawl 1
South West Birmingham 3
Telford 2
Madeley 1
Wellington 1
Wallasey 1
Hoylake 1
Blackburn 2
Darwen 1
Manchester Openshaw 2
Halifax 22
Huddersfield 22
Dewsbury 22
Todmorden 21
City Derby 4
Gateshead 2
Felling 1
Blaydon 1
Birtley 1
Exmouth 1
Honiton 1
Tiverton 1
Sidmouth 1
Chelmsford 12
Southend 11
Rayeigh 11
Willesden 1
Wembley 1
Kilburn 1
Harlesden 1
Winchester 1
Streatham 1
1 ONE Basic Model Pilot
2 ONE Call Centre Pilot

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