Labour plans pitch for ’welfare to work’ brief

The Government is expected to put a ’welfare to work’ advertising campaign out to pitch to promote measures to end youth unemployment announced in the Budget.

The Government is expected to put a ’welfare to work’ advertising

campaign out to pitch to promote measures to end youth unemployment

announced in the Budget.



The push, which could cost up to pounds 2 million and include TV spots,

will aim to explain the new opportunities available to the 250,000

jobless under-25s as part of the ’new deal’, promised by the Chancellor,

Gordon Brown, on Wednesday.



The campaign will also target employers, who will be offered a pounds

75-a-week rebate for taking on a young unemployed person.



Government sources said planning was still at an early stage. A

Whitehall committee is believed to be involved in talks with the Central

Office of Information.



A pitch-list has yet to be drawn up. Agencies that may be in the running

include DMB&B and GGT, who have both worked on similar campaigns for the

Department for Education and Employment, and BMP DDB, which promoted

state benefits for the Social Security department.



If ministers want an urgent campaign and there is no time for a pitch,

the job could fall to Ogilvy and Mather which has edged ahead of Leo

Burnett as the COI’s main standby agency.



Under the Government’s proposals, everyone below the age of 25 who has

been unemployed for more than six months will be guaranteed full-time

study or work in the private or voluntary sector or with Labour’s

environment task force.



Any advertising campaign will be monitored by the Tories, who may accuse

Labour of ’political advertising’.



Elsewhere in the Budget, agencies will be pleased by the Chancellor’s

decision to cut corporation tax for small companies by 2 per cent. The

Chancellor continued the Government’s war on tobacco by putting up the

price of cigarettes by 19p a packet from 1 December. He also increased

tax on petrol and diesel by 4p a litre.



Despite his preference for water over whisky, Brown went easy on

alcohol, declaring that duties will rise only in line with inflation

from January 1998. A predicted tax on alcopops, to put them beyond the

pockets of teenagers, did not materialise.



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