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Complainant Name:
Mr Jonathan Portes

Clauses Noted: 1

Publication: Daily Mail


Mr Jonathan Portes, Director of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, complained to the Press Complaints Commission that the newspaper had published inaccurate and misleading information on its website in breach of Clause 1 (Accuracy) of the Editors' Code of Practice. The complainant said that the newspaper had incorrectly stated that £2.7 billion was paid in Jobseekers Allowance to residents of Birmingham. He was further concerned that the newspaper incorrectly reported that the number of "workless households... rose through the boom years".


The complaint was resolved when the PCC negotiated the removal of the article and the publication of the following correction on the newspaper's website:

An article published on 2 February 2014 incorrectly stated that Birmingham has the highest benefits bill in the UK, with £2.7bn paid out in Jobseeker's Allowance - £157 per adult. In fact, £2.7bn was the total benefits spend in Birmingham for 2013. The correct figure for Jobseekers Allowance is £173 million, and this is £157 per adult. Additionally, the article stated that ‘the number of workless households rose through the boom years'. In fact, while the number of households where no adult had ever worked did rise through the boom years, the number of households where no person was in work at the time of the survey fell during this period. We are happy to clarify this.

Date Published: 17/03/2014

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