New jobs are being created in Stoke-on-Trent – with the opening of a ‘temporary’ jobcentre.
The new service will operate within One Smithfield, in Hanley, and is one of 80 such centres being created across the UK.
But StokeonTrentLive understands that the temporary jobcentre will not be taking up the vacant second floor and part of the empty first floor of the city centre office building.
It means Stoke-on-Trent City Council is still refusing to disclose who has signed a five-year lease to take over the empty office space within One Smithfield following a private cabinet meeting last month. Stoke-on-Trent City Council leader Abi Brown refused to publicly speak on the issue when pressed yesterday
The temporary jobcentres are part of the Government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. Hanley’s existing jobcentre – in nearby Upper Huntbach Street – is unaffected by the move.
Minister for Employment Mims Davies said: “With more new, temporary jobcentres in place in the heart of our communities, we can support even more people impacted by the pandemic to find work and progress into new roles.
“We’ve already boosted our DWP work coaches by 10,000 – and with these new local jobcentres to operate from, we can drive forward our plan for jobs, creating fresh opportunity for people all across the country.”
The Department for Work and Pensions is looking to recruit 13,500 work coaches, with some of them working in the new jobcentres. It is part of moves to support jobseekers who are without work or who may need to retrain as a result of the coronavirus crisis.
Latest figures show 1.7 million Brits were without a job in January.
The unemployment rate currently stands at five per cent – the highest level in five years – and that is expected to rise to 6.5 per cent by the end of the year.
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