Youth Jobs Taskforce Report: Sheffield

December 17, 2012 1:21 pm

Author:

Share this Article

Cllr Julie Dore and her team at Sheffield City Council have got some awful decisions to take over the weeks to come. Like all Labour councils they’re being hit disproportionately hard by the government’s cuts.  I was in town last week with Labour’s Youth Jobs’ Taskforce research team to meet Angela Smith MP and hear how Labour’s leaders are fighting for Sheffield’s young people.

Amidst all the tough decisions, Julie and Cllr Leigh Brammall, cabinet member for business, skills and development, are putting in place a revolution in back to work services for young people. The Jobs for Youth scheme pulls together policy that identifies young people at risk of becoming unemployed, helping them prepare for employment, and encouraging employers to create apprenticeships.

Sheffield City Council has worked with schools, colleges and training providers to develop a risk of NEETs indicator that identifies potential NEETs. A new partnership, Sheffield Futures is then tasked with the job of helping young people prepare for the future. Community Youth Teams work to bring these young people back into education or employment. They work within schools and communities to identify those needing support and to engage with disconnected young people.

But a second partnership, Ambition Sheffield then kicks in. This scheme provides training programmes that boost numeracy and literacy schemes, or pre-apprenticeships, which improve employability. The final piece of the jigsaw is Opportunity Sheffield: the Council works with employers to boost the number of apprenticeships and jobs offered to young people.

Bringing together the council’s business support and engagement work, the team is also identifying where businesses might be interested in taking on new apprentices – and crucially a £1 million investment from the hard-pressed council into areas such as housing and highways is providing wage subsidies for 200 young people into apprenticeships for the future.

Under the City Deal, 4,000 apprenticeships are expected to be set up in SMEs in the region. But the Council also brokers 200 apprenticeships for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The directors of M+G Olympic Products, where I started the day with two new apprentices, are very clear about just how successful the scheme has become: ‘Frankly this is a model for how every council should do it. Without it, we’d have not taken on new young people’.

The city has put the fight for jobs at the heart of its City Deal negotiations with government – and has bold plans for the future. Its yet another inspiring story of how Labour councils and leaders all over Britain are leading the fight for youth jobs. It’s an inspiration we’re determined to learn from.

Liam Byrne is the Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary

  • Nadine Horrors

    I read a book yesterday Burger Bar Dad which although it is a rom-com also has a lot to say about contemporary Britain under the Con-Dems. It suggests that Young people are being offered nothing in reality and without a commitment to full employment never will. The days of ignoring a vast swathe of the ‘welfare dependent’ population have to be seen as over and Labour must lead that charge. otherwise the social cost will be much higher than the electoral one.

Latest

  • News Labour consider selling off central London buildings to help pay off the deficit

    Labour consider selling off central London buildings to help pay off the deficit

    The Labour leadership say they would consider selling off QEII Conference Centre and the Civil Service Club – alongside two other buildings in London – to help pay off the deficit. They say they selling off these government-owned buildings could raise up to £100m, and would be part of a “fairer way” of reducing the deficit. Alongside selling off the QEII conference centre and the Civil Service Club, Labour are also thinking about selling Marlborough House, which is near Buckingham Palace […]

    Read more →
  • Featured Gordon Brown to announce departure as an MP “within days”

    Gordon Brown to announce departure as an MP “within days”

    Former Labour leader and Prime Minister Gordon Brown is set to resign as MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath “within days” according to a report from the Sunday Mirror. Brown, who played a key role in the Scottish referendum campaign this year – giving a barnstorming speech on the eve of the vote that defined the case for the union. Brown’s rumoured departure follows his long-time ally Alistair Darling’s decision to quit Parliament in 2015. The Sunday Mirror reports: “Gordon Brown will […]

    Read more →
  • News Scotland Findlay says information going to party members for leadership vote is “insulting”

    Findlay says information going to party members for leadership vote is “insulting”

    Neil Findlay MSP, who is running to be leader of the Scottish Labour Party, is calling on the Labour Party to clarify what information will be given to members with Leadership ballot papers. At the moment it looks as though the booklet with candidate statements in it only lists the nominations each candidate received from Parliamentarians and not from Constituency Labour Parties, trade Unions or socialist societies. In response to this, Findlay has released the following statement: “Over the last […]

    Read more →
  • Comment It’s Ukip that offends working class sentiment

    It’s Ukip that offends working class sentiment

    After this week’s Twitter row at the Rochester by-election, I am using my keynote speech to the Labour East Regional Conference today to say that it is UKIP who truly offends working class sentiment and represents a party which is fundamentally un-British. Today I am lucky to serve as a Euro MP but, like many in our movement, I grew up on a council estate living in poverty, so don’t need any lectures from UKIP about snobbery. First, we can’t counter UKIP […]

    Read more →
  • News Balls says money raised from banking fines should go to the NHS

    Balls says money raised from banking fines should go to the NHS

    In a speech today at Labour’s East of England regional conference in Ipswich, Ed Balls has announced that £1bn raised from banks who are fined for manipulating the markers should go to the NHS. He is calling on George Osborne to include this in his Autumn Statement, due to take place on the 3rd December. This also comes after many health care professionals said due to funding cuts, “the NHS and our social care services are at breaking point.” Balls […]

    Read more →