'Try before you hire' poster on Twitter refers to 1989 policy

Outrage on Twitter directed at poster in the lobby of a Jobcentre in Manchester, but the policy isn't exactly new.

Yesterday this tweet caused quite a stir:

Here's the image in question:

Lockhart later tweeted a correction - the poster is actually in the Employment Suite (a sort of mirror to the Jobcentre Plus, run for employers looking for employees), located in Manchester’s London Scottish House, not in the Rochdale Jobcentre Plus - but, in his own words, “well my Twitter account seems to have exploded - I assume this is out of control now”. And how:

However, a DWP spokesperson confirmed that various "try before you hire" schemes have been in place since 1989 under the Work Trials programme umbrella. Direct from the DWP site:

A Work Trial is a way of trying out a potential employee before offering them a job. Once agreed with Jobcentre Plus, you can offer a work trial if the job is for 16 hours or more a week and lasting at least 13 weeks.

Work Trials are used by roughly two or three thousand people a month, and have been for "years", the DWP spokesperson told us, and over the last few years has largely been superceded by the very work programmes that the government lost its case on appeal today at the Supreme Court.

The post in the lobby of Manchester's Employment Suite. (Photo: @andymlockhart)
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Police shoot man in parliament

A man carrying what appeared to be a knife was shot by armed police after entering the parliamentary estate. 

From the window of the parliamentary Press Gallery, I have just seen police shoot a man who charged at officers while carrying what appeared to be a knife. A large crowd was seen fleeing from the man before he entered the parliamentary estate.

After several officers evaded him he was swiftly shot by armed police.

Ministers have been evacuated and journalists ordered to remain at their desks. 

More follows. Read Julia Rampen's news story here.

Armed police at the cordon outside Parliament on Wednesday afternoon. Photo: Getty

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.