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Report cover showing a crowd of people

Increasing Employment Rates for Ethnic Minorities

“Some progress has been made in tackling unemployment rates within ethnic minority groups, but the reality is that over recent years, while there has been a slow but steady improvement, the overall reduction in the employment gap has been modest.

“The Department for Work and Pension’s strategy has been fragmented but is being refocused on those living in deprived areas. While this provides opportunities to help those most disadvantaged, it carries the risk that some ethnic minorities may not receive the help they need to get a job. Unless the Department is prepared to do more to reach out to the ethnic minority communities, prospects for increasing their employment rate remain bleak”

Published:
1 Feb 2008
Report cover showing a harvester in a field

DEFRA: A progress update in resolving the difficulties in administering the Single Payment Scheme in England

“Since my report over a year ago on the implementation of the Single Payment Scheme, the Rural Payments Agency has made encouraging progress in remedying the problems I highlighted, as demonstrated by an increase in farmers’ satisfaction with the handling of their claims.

“But, until the Agency is in the position consistently to meet the June deadline each year and can process payments within an acceptable tolerance of error, the risk is that farmers’ confidence in the scheme will wane and the European Commission will levy financial penalties.”

Published:
12 Dec 2007
Report cover showing the City of London at night

The Carbon Trust: accelerating the move to a low carbon economy

“Climate change presents very serious global risks. The Carbon Trust has done a good job at persuading businesses and public sector organisations to start tackling the problem and its work to date has proved value for money. Its achievement in reducing carbon dioxide emissions in 2006-07 by up to two million tonnes is commendable, but it is a small one in view of the scale of the challenge ahead. The Carbon Trust needs to build on its good work and extend its drive to encourage business leaders to review the carbon footprint of their organisation and to take decisive action to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.”

Published:
22 Nov 2007
Report cover showing men working on a machine

Sustainable employment: supporting people to stay in work and advance

“Many initiatives led by the Department for Work and Pensions have increased the number of people entering work and, as such, have made a difference. However, for some people, help in finding work is only part of the solution, they also need support during the transition as they start a new job, and help to increase their skills so they can stay in work and move up the ladder.

“The Department for Work and Pensions and the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills need to work together, and to join up national initiatives with local action so that people are not just helped into work, but to stay in work.”

Published:
14 Nov 2007
Report cover showing coastal flood defences

Building and maintaining river and coastal flood defences in England

“The Agency has made progress in improving how it manages England’s flood defences since I last reported in 2001. But climate change is likely to increase the number of homes and businesses at risk of flooding in the future.”

“If the Environment Agency has any chance of meeting its future targets it must now focus more consistently on improving the condition of its high risk flood defences. Its work in the best performing regions shows that this is possible.”

Published:
15 Jun 2007