‘Pressure on budget’ leads to Newham Workplace changes

Newham Council is aiming to discourage work seekers from outside the borough from using its job brokerage service.

The authority is consulting on changes to the flagship Workplace scheme in a bid to cut costs.

Applicants will be asked to show proof of at least one year’s residence before getting access to the service.

The requirement is currently in place - but it is understood this will be enforced more stringently if new proposals come into effect.

Workplace was opened five years ago to take advantage of possible opportunities arising from the Olympics and the borough’s subsequent regeneration.

The council says it has placed more than 12,000 people in jobs at the likes of Westfield Stratford City and Aspers Casino. However, there are no figures available which show whether those jobseekers are still in post.

The council’s proposal on its online survey reads: “Due to growing demand for services combined with the current environment of diminishing financial resources, additional pressure has been placed on Newham budget.

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“(We are) therefore considering ways to manage the number of residents who access the scheme to ensure that the service is affordable and sustainable.”

Workplace currently has offices in Canning Town, East Ham and Stratford for those who want employment or business start-up advice.

The online consultation lasts until October 15 and is open to all. The findings will go before a meeting of the Cabinet.

To take part, visit www.newham.gov.uk/Jobs/Workplaceconsultation.htm