Labour to 'conquer' youth unemployment

Ed Miliband offers a 'real jobs guarantee' to young people
Ed Miliband offers a 'real jobs guarantee' to young people

By Alex Stevenson

A Labour government in power now would banish long-term unemployment among the young, Ed Miliband has promised.

The opposition's 'real jobs guarantee' would see all those under-25s unemployed for one year offered six months of work.

Mr Miliband told Labour's youth conference on jobs in Warwick that a Labour Budget would introduce a bank bonus tax which would pay the wages of unemployed people.

"For Labour, it is simply unacceptable to have so many talented young people out of work for an entire year, with their hopes and dreams evaporating," he said.

"And that's why my ambition is this: to conquer long term youth unemployment.

"When people ask what's the difference between ourselves and this government, let's tell them: under Labour, a job is guaranteed, at least at the minimum wage with real training and real prospects.

"Real jobs, real wages, a real chance for our young people: a real jobs guarantee."

This week's figures showed youth unemployment has risen to 1,042,000, but deputy prime minister Nick Clegg told MPs in prime minister's questions this Wednesday that youth unemployment had risen by 40% under Labour.

"Behind the headline figures long-term unemployment actually came down in the quarterly figures, and very importantly the number of new jobs created in the private sector outstripped the number of jobs lost in the public sector," Mr Clegg told MPs.

He added that the Labour party in government had "sucked up to the City of London and over-relied on jobs in the public sector".

Mr Miliband used his speech today to insist that his party is "on the side of those who work hard, strive, play by the rules", however.

He pointed out the coalition has scrapped the Future Jobs Fund and replaced it with failing work and jobs programmes.

"Work experience of course has a role to play in helping people into work," the Labour leader acknowledged.

"But work experience is not the same as a real job. It cannot be the summit of our ambitions. There is only one solution to a jobs crisis: jobs."


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