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Unemployed young people could be forced on to apprenticeships or traineeships

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Unemployed young people will lose out on benefits if they fail to get a job or start an apprenticeship or traineeship, as part of a new "no excuses" approach to welfare being unveiled by the government. 

As part of the crackdown by the government’s “earn or learn” taskforce, led by former skills minister Matt Hancock, unemployed 18- to 21-year-olds face missing out on benefits if they do not comply with the new requirement to undertake work (paid or unpaid) or training by April 2017.

The news emerged as Mr Hancock, the Paymaster General, also unveiled a three-week “boot camp” programme designed to help claimants become work-ready more quickly.

“We are determined to fulfil our commitments to end the welfare culture that is embedded in some of Britain’s most vulnerable communities,” he said. “By working across government to make sure that every young person is in work or training, by opening up 3 million more apprenticeships, expanding traineeships, and making sure that a life on benefits is simply not an option, we want to end rolling welfare dependency for good, so welfare dependency is no longer passed down the generations.”

Within the first three weeks of claiming out-of-work benefits, jobseekers will be required to take up an “intensive activity programme” designed to help them into sustainable employment. The course, which will last three weeks, will include practising job applications and interview techniques.

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