Mayor backs youth jobs scheme

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Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson

Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson Pic: Liam Deveney

A charter has been launched to find employment opportunities for over 18,000 youths who claim job seekers allowance in the city.

The aim of the charter is to persuade public, private and voluntary employers to create opportunities for young people using a five point plan.

It hopes to guarantee a job for every young person out of work for six months and provide apprenticeships, work experience and practical support to help people stay in education, travel and stay in work.

There are currently 149,000 young people aged between 18-24 who are classed as NEETs – ‘not in employment, education or training.’

Mayor Joe Anderson said: “I am delighted to support the Charter – it’s something that as a city of Liverpool and as leader of Liverpool I am absolutely 100 per cent behind.

“We’ve got to do so much more to help young people find work, otherwise we are going to lose a generation with over a million young people unemployed and that figure is growing.

“We have got to make sure that our young people are our top priority in everything that we do in the city of Liverpool. Young people are often forgotten and not talked about and they are vitally important to the future of the city and its regeneration.”

Some help is already being provided through the council to combat youth unemployment. They have provided 700 apprenticeships for 16 and 17 year olds in the past two years.

Financial funding through the Mayoral Education and Skills bursary also ensures that 3,500 people are provided with £20 a week to help with travel and training expenses.

TUC Regional Secretary Alan Manning said: “We know that Joe Anderson has a strong commitment to young people and has already taken extremely positive steps to help the city’s younger generation.

“By signing our Charter, he is giving a strong lead to employers and potential employers and sending out a clear message that Liverpool’s young people should not pay the price for the recession. They desperately need a future that works.

“We hope the Mayor’s support for our Charter will encourage others to accept their responsibilities to the next generation. Unless we take determined action, we will be condemning our young people to becoming a lost generation.”

About Rachael Bentham, JMU Journalism