Magazine article Public Finance

Central Government

Magazine article Public Finance

Central Government

Article excerpt

Sponsored by: IPF

Hartlepool action team for jobs, based in the town's Jobcentre Plus, was one of three national pathfinders set up in 2000 to work in the most economically disadvantaged areas.

In its first year it had a target to help 300 of the town's jobless residents into work. It more than doubled that total and, since its inception, has helped 2,175 people to find jobs.

The team delivers its services from 30 venues around Hartlepool to take its work out into the heart of communities, and makes use of mobile units and even a market stall.

It has used more unusual means to reach out, for example organising a five-a-side football tournament involving staff and customers, which has helped to break down barriers between young people and agency staff.

Other initiatives have included providing work starter packs for homeless people and debt advice services during the Christmas season.

The team smashed many of its targets in 2004/05 - most impressively it helped 365 people to find work against a goal of 236.

The 'race to improve' team, based in the Pension Service's Glasgow office, set up a project to forge better relations between staff and customers from ethnic minorities.

It was intended to demonstrate the staff's commitment to race equality by showing their determination to overcome difficulties such as language barriers, a lack of cultural awareness and a reluctance among some customers from ethnic minorities to contact a government department. …

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