Piccadilly Pulse: Should unemployed youths be forced to take training courses to get jobseeker’s allowance?

Young, unemployed people should have their benefits stopped if they refuse training to learn key skills, according to Labour Leader Ed Miliband.

Mr Miliband stated that under 18-21-year-olds would only be entitled to receive jobseeker’s allowance if they already possess the key skills to get a job, if Labour are voted in at the general elections next year.

With roughly 100,000 18-21-year-olds currently claiming JSA, the proposals are likely to prove controversial.

Those with skills below level-3 (A-level/BTEC) would be told to take up training to gain qualifications at least at that level and in doing so would qualify for a means tested allowance.

MM decided to find out how the people of Manchester feel about the proposed change.

Should young people lose their benefits if they refuse training to take training schemes?







James Lamp, 26, from Manchester who works in customer service who has previously been unemployed, said: “I think it’s a great idea. When I was unemployed I was actually looking for a job and had GCES and A-levels to back me up.

“The ones that leave school with nothing shouldn’t be allowed to sit about all day with even trying to get work.”

IT trainer, Matt Stevenson, 43, from Salford agreed, saying: “To be honest, I think it’s a bit easy for people to come out of school and go straight on the dole.

“The government need to make sure they aren’t just living of the rest of us for nothing.”

A 28-year-old sandwich shop worker who wished to remain anonymous felt more strongly. She said: “I definitely think that they should be made to get the qualifications needed for a job.

“I don’t want to pay for them sitting on their *rse and using our money to buy drink and drugs.”

“Some young people, it seems, also agree with Mr Miliband’s plan.

Claire Warden, a 21-year-old student at Manchester University, said: “Yes I think if you’re not willing to train and try to improve your chances of getting a job then they should stop their benefits.

“None of my friends are on benefits. They have all either gone to uni or got a job, even if it’s not a job they want to do.”

However, Claire’s friend Anna Johnson, 21, also at Manchester University disagrees and feels that forcing training on people may actually harm their chances of finding a job.

Claire said: “I don’t think you should be forced to do training that you don’t want to.

“It may stop you looking for a job in the meantime.”

The announcement of Labours plan follows a YouGov poll which showed that 60% of people could not see Ed Miliband as Prime Minister.

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