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Budget March 2010 - employment

  • Published: Friday, 25 June 2010

The Chancellor said that unemployment has been rising but figures last week showed a fall and that the level here is lower than in the euro area and America. The number of people claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance has fallen. The government has extended its scheme to guarantee young people out of work for six months a job or training until March 2012. The government will consult on changing law around retirement age.

Budget 22 June 2010

What is the Budget?

Find out what the Budget does and what takes place on the day

The March 2010 Budget was the final Budget for the last Labour government. George Osborne, Chancellor of the new coalition government, delivered his first Budget on Tuesday 22 June 2010. The new Budget may affect some of the information below. To read about the June Budget, click the orange button.

School and college leavers

The Chancellor announced support for young people to get into employment, including:

  • guaranteed education or training for all 16 and 17 year olds
  • a higher number of apprenticeships
  • funding for more university places

18-24 year olds

The Chancellor will extend the Young Person’s Guarantee scheme for one year until March 2012. This scheme guarantees 18-24 year olds a job, training or work experience if they can’t find work within six months of claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance.

Minimum wage

Budget 2010 announced a 2.2 per cent rise in the main rate of the national minimum wage to £5.93 from October 2010.

Working parents

Budget 2010 announced a simpler system for working parents who claim the childcare part of the Working Tax Credit for short periods of time, such as during school holidays. This helps parents get the payments when they need it most.

Over 60s

The Chancellor lowered the minimum hours people over 60 must work to qualify for Working Tax Credit to 16 hours per week.

Retirement age

The government will consult on changing laws around retirement age to help people who want to work past 65. Options include:

  • scrapping the ‘Default Retirement Age’ of 65 years (when employers can demand you retire)
  • raising the Default Retirement Age from 65
  • giving employees stronger rights

No changes will be made before April 2011.

Helping people back into work

The Chancellor announced that from April 2011, people with a limited capability for work will automatically qualify for the disability part of Working Tax Credit.

The government will consider changing the measures in the ‘disadvantage test’ used in working out Working Tax Credit to encourage people to return to work.

Public sector workers

The Chancellor announced a Code of Practice to set pay for senior public sector workers.

The government will also reduce the number of civil servants in London by a third over the next 10 years, starting by relocating 15,000 jobs from London.

Unemployment rise is less than predicted

Budget 2010 announced that unemployment has risen to just under 2.5 million, however:

  • this is well below the levels predicted by some
  • the labour market has held up better than expected during the recession
  • the number of people claiming JobSeekers Allowance has fallen by 47,000 since October 2009

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Additional links

Budget Day 2011

Budget 2011 on Directgov

Budget June 2010

Full coverage of the new government's first Budget

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