‘Tory- led Government’s Apprenticeships scheme fails young people’- Alex MP

The Tory-led Government is kicking away the ladders for the next generations by failing to secure sufficient levels of apprenticeships for young people.

The government’s £1.4bn skills training scheme, intended to ameliorate youth unemployment, last year only provided 37,000 jobs for people aged 16-24, out of a total of the 126,000 apprenticeships created.

The Institute for Public Policy Research report on apprenticeships states that 40% of apprenticeships in the last year have gone to over 25’s, and criticised the government’s scheme for failing to achieve the very thing it was set up to do -help support young people into work when the job market is particularly difficult and provide a basis for future study or career progression.

Labour has tabled an amendment to the Education Bill that calls on the Government to improve participation by employers in apprenticeships, and proposes to strengthen the duty of the Skills Funding Agency in securing apprenticeships for young people.

Unemployment amongst young people was falling under Labour’s Future Jobs Fund but it has been ditched by the Government without anything to replace it.

Alex said:

“These figures are evidence that, despite its rhetoric on apprenticeships as a means for addressing youth unemployment, the Tory-led Government is failing to offer a programme for jobs and growth for the next generation.”

“Apprenticeships could and should be the life line for young people who are trapped in a ‘catch-22’ situation of being unable to find a job because they are lacking the skills employers are demanding, but without a job, they cannot develop the skills they need to get on in the job market.”

“Young people deserve better than this- the government urgently needs to act if they are to stop a whole generation being lost to a life of unemployment and are unable to reach their full potential.”