Clegg is 'plaster solution to national crisis'

Labour says the proposal is 'too little too late'
Labour says the proposal is 'too little too late'

By Cassie Chambers

Labour blasted Nick Clegg's proposed solution to youth unemployment this morning, calling it a "plaster solution for a national crisis".

The attack came as the deputy prime minister announced a speeded-up youth contract to get young people into work in 20 problem areas.

"Much too little and much too late. This is a sticking plaster solution for what is now a national crisis," said shadow work secretary Liam Byrne.

Labour called on the government to properly fund the programme via increased tax revenues from banks.

"What on earth is wrong with asking bankers to pay a little more to help make sure our young people have a future?" Mr Byrne added.

"Only this terrible government would think that's a bad idea"

The pilot area announcement came as part of a package of measures announced employers' organisation CBI today, as Mr Clegg spoke about the "human tragedy" of youth unemployment.

The programme will decrease the time young people must be out of work before qualifying for unemployment benefits and bolster subsidies to employers so they can offer higher wages to new staff.

"How we help these young men and women says something, says everything, about who we are," the deputy prime minister said.

Current figures estimate there are now over one million youth in the UK out of work.

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