Sign up to Government jobs website and make an effort or lose benefit, claimants told


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Signing on for jobless benefits will become a thing of the past later this month, Iain Duncan Smith, the Work and Pensions Secretary, will announce today.

From April 28, the unemployed will have to tell Jobcentre Plus staff at their first interview what steps they have already taken to make themselves employable, such as producing a CV, setting up an email address and registering for the Government’s new jobs website. They will now be expected to do this before claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA). Officials will be able them to order them to take such action or attend a course.  If they refuse, they could have their JSA cut or withdrawn.

Claimants could also be told to meet their Jobcentre adviser weekly instead of fortnightly and all new claimants will have a progress review every three months.

Esther McVey, the Employment Minister, said last night: “ This is about treating people like adults and setting out clearly what is expected of them so they can hit the ground running. In return, we will give people as much help and support as possible to move off benefits and into work because we know from employers that it’s the people who are prepared and enthusiastic who are most likely to get the job.”