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The Somerset Guardian, 7th December 2022

Last Friday, I visited the Jobcentre in Bath to talk to staff and clients.

My visits to the Jobcentre are always helpful in understanding how Government policy is being delivered and how both employees and clients are managing any new changes to the system on a ‘shop floor’ level.

The recent advancements in policy by the Department for Work and Pensions have been implemented to ensure that those who need the most support are receiving it and to speed up the process of getting people back into work. As I mentioned in a previous article, an extra £1 billion is being spent to aid jobseekers and the Government is bringing forward the nationwide roll-out of the In-Work Progression offer, which will mean that Universal Credit claimants who are in work will meet a dedicated work coach with the objective of increasing their hours or earnings. I met one of the coaches who is doing a superb job in helping people increase their skills and crucially, their confidence.

Whilst I was at the Jobcentre, I met a group of Ukrainian refugees who are currently being supported by the Jobcentre as well as B&NES and local groups such as Bath Welcomes Refugees. They were being advised on how to set up businesses and I listened to part of a session where they learned about the intricacies of National Insurance. These are brave people who have had to flee from terror to a country with a different alphabet and spoken language and they deserve our support.

As always, I was deeply impressed by the staff at the jobcentre. Their dedication, hard work and passion towards helping people in all situations was obvious. Everyone is valued for what they can do and individuals' potential can be unlocked.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if I can be of any assistance:

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