HC Deb 28 April 2003 vol 404 c191W
Mr. Wray

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what proposals he has to make the New Deal 50 Plus Scheme available to over 50s on the first day they become unemployed.[109130]

Mr. Nicholas Brown

We have no plans for day one entry to New Deal 50 plus. New Deal programmes are aimed at those most in need of help to find sustainable employment and move from welfare to work. The majority of unemployed people, including those aged 50 and over, find work unassisted within the first six months of unemployment.

Our Green Paper "Simplicity Security and Choice: Working and Saving for Retirement", sets out our proposals to further increase the employment of older people and to widen choice and opportunity for older people to stay in work longer. The proposals include a package of more intensive back to work help for people aged 50 and over including extending the support available through New Deal 50 Plus so that individually tailored help for each customer can be drawn from a range of possible options.