LONG-TERM unempl-oyed people should be guaranteed a job if out of work for two years, claims the Labour Party.

Margaret Curran, Shadow Scottish Secretary, has called on the UK Government to introduce a Compulsory Jobs Guarantee as Westminster debated the coalition's welfare reforms.

The plan would mean after two years on the dole a job at the mini-mum wage would be offered to people aged over 25 and, if refused, benefits would be cut.

She said figures show-ed long-term unemploy-ment in Scotland had increased at a higher rate than the rest of the UK, with the number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance for more than 12 months going up from 4500 to 20,850 between 2008 and 2012. The Scottish rise was 360% compared to a UK rise of 320%

Ms Curran, Labour MP for Glasgow East, said: "With long-term unemployment rising faster in Scotland than any other part of the UK, Scots stand to gain from Labour's compul-sory jobs guarantee.

"We want a welfare system that supports hard-working families and those who can't work but ensures that those who are able to work are in a job."

She has written to the SNP Westminster Lead-er Angus Robertson, asking his party to back their plan.

Labour says welfare and tax changes will give people earning £1m a year a £100,000 tax cut, but an average family with one earner would lose out by £534 a year.