Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Councillor Calls for Keith Jobcentre Outreach Facility


REDUCTION IN BUS SERVICE PROMPTS CALL FOR CHANGE OF JOBCENTRE ARRANGEMENTS

The likely withdrawal of a vital bus route following Moray Council budget cuts has prompted a call from the SNP councillor for Keith, Gary Coull, to launch a bid for the creation of a Jobcentre outreach facility in his ward.

Keith has been linked with Buckie through a regular bus service that allowed those seeking work to access the Job Centre with relative ease.

However, the removal of that service will follow the decision by Moray Council to withdraw their subsidy to the service operators.

That leaves people in Keith who do not have their own transport little option but to take four different buses and almost an entire day to visit the Jobcentre, with additional costs involved they can barely afford.

Councillor Coull said:

“At a time when people are looking to take any kind of work to build their experience then the last thing we need is to make it more difficult for them to do so.

“There are also new regulations coming into play that could mean people having to attend interviews at their Jobcentre on a more regular basis, putting further pressure on people in Keith who are affected by the withdrawal of their direct bus service.

“I have already written to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, highlighting that there is a case for the creation of an outreach Jobcentre facility in Keith.

“Such a facility would allow service users in Keith to attend interviews and obtain advice or meet statutory welfare requirements.

“It would surely be preferably for one or two members of staff from the Buckie Jobcentre to make the journey weekly by car than for dozens of service users to use up an entire day for a single interview – time that would be better spent searching for work.”
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