MSP Joan McAlpine today welcomed new proposals set out by the Department
of Work and Pensions following a review of the services they deliver in
Sanquhar and Kirkconnel.

Under the new proposals, from October an outreach service will be
established in Kirkconnel Resource Centre on a Monday from 9.30 to 12.00
then from 13.00 to 15.30. Claimants would be asked to attend a Jobcentre
once per month and the outreach site once per month and would be able to
select either Dumfries or Cumnock Jobcentre. Attendance at a jobcentre
would be limited to a maximum of 3 times in the first 13 weeks of their
Jobseekers allowance claim being made.

Commenting, Ms McAlpine said:

“I am pleased that the DWP has listened to the comments I made during
the consultation exercise and reversed its decision to remove all job
centre services in Sanquhar and Kirkconnel.

“I welcome this announcement which should help reduce the traveling time
and costs for unemployed individuals in Kirkconnel who currently have to
make a 30 mile round-trip to sign on and access employment services in

“I hope that the Department of Work and Pensions will soon be able to
provide a similar outreach service in Sanquhar”.