JUST one in every 27 jobless people in the Merseyside area have found work through a flagship government scheme – triggering criticism it is comprehensively failing.
Only 3.75% of long-term unemployed put through the £435m Work Programme were successfully placed in employment for "several months".
Incredibly, it means more people would have found sustainable work if the programme had never been set up, on the government's own analysis.
In total, 39,230 people were put in the scheme in its first 13 months across Merseyside, North Cheshire and West Lancashire, but only 1,470 found work lasting, in most cases, six months-plus.
In Liverpool (3.57%), Knowsley (3.54%) and St Helens (3.74%) performance was even worse, but in Wirral (4.74%) and Sefton (4.1%) it was slightly better. Two years ago, the department for work and pensions (DWP) estimated that 5% of the long-term jobless find work whether they are given help or not.
Labour leapt on the analysis as proof that the government's welfare revolution – offering payment-by-results to giant private firms – was "comprehensively failing".
Liam Byrne, the party's work spokesman, said: "We were promised a welfare revolution and what we've got has been exposed as worse than doing nothing."