The figures show that of the 9,500 people aged over 60 referred by Job Centre Plus to the Work Programme in the first 14 months of the scheme, only 140 people (1.48%) managed to find a job through the scheme.Commenting on these figures, Michelle Mitchell, Charity Director General of Age UK said that they are a "stark reminder of the huge challenges facing unemployed older people. Many are being locked out of the job market for no reason other than their age." One step that AgeUK is recommending is for the government to refer older people to the program sooner than the current 12 months after being out of work. In addition, AgeUK is urging that the contractors running program receive incentives to encourage them to find jobs for older people.
For people aged 55-59 the rate was 2.79 %. These figures compare to a success rate for 18-24 year olds of 3.78% and (3.75%) for those aged 25-34. The overall rate is 3.56%.
Source: AgeUK "Over 55s let down by Government’s Work Programme" (December 12, 2012)