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Are our job centres working?

Host_Ryan - One Show team | 15:19 UK time, Monday, 16 February 2009

Have your say.


With unemployment hovering around the 2 million mark, and commentators predicting worse things to come, the nation's job centres are trying hard to cope with the influx of people needing work.

But, as the One Show's Anita Rani discovered, there's a growing section of job-seekers who are far from most people's perceptions of the long-term unemployed. The fastest growing sector of people claiming Job Seeker's Allowance are from what many think of as typically middle class professions, and for many it is the first time in their lives that they've visited a job centre.

Anita met Phil Lowthian, district manager of Jobcentre Plus, the publicly funded employment service, and asked him what they are doing to improve the system and help companies who want white collar workers.

She also met an ex director of operations for an IT firm who feels totally let down by the system and thinks his only route back to work is via costly recruitment agencies.

Jobcentre Plus has advice on what to do if you find yourself umemployed here. There's also a BBC News guide on how to cope with unemployment.

More information:
BBC News: Unemployment at 12-year high

BBC News: UK jobs tracker

Government guide to Job Seeker's Allowance

Search for jobs and training

But what do you think? Are job centres doing enough for specialists and professionals? And what lengths would you be prepared to go to find work? Have your say?

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