- The Mayor’s Young Person’s Guarantee commits a job, training or apprenticeship opportunity to every young person out of work for more than six months.
- 10,000 jobs and 7,000 apprenticeships created so far.
- New programme offers £3,000 wage incentive to get 240 young people into jobs or training over three years.
Mayor Steve Rotheram’s Young Person’s Guarantee (YPG) has taken another major step forward and is on course to help thousands more young people across the Liverpool City Region into work or training.
The YPG, which was one of the Mayor’s manifesto pledges, promised a job, training or apprenticeship opportunity to every young person out of work, education or training for more than six months.
More than 10,000 jobs and 7,000 apprenticeships have been created through initiatives including the YPG, the Be More app and the transfer of millions of pounds in unspent Apprenticeship Levy to smaller companies.
Building on this success, the Combined Authority have approved £795,000 from the Strategic Investment Fund to further support under-25s.
A new scheme will see wage incentives of £3,000 offered to local employers who recruit young people. The aim is to get 240 more people aged 18 to 25 into education, employment or training over the next three years.
The new scheme will support an additional 720 young people with one-to-one personal advice and mentoring. It will aim to give 4,500 young people aged 18-24 access to job opportunities by 2026.
Liverpool City Region Mayor Steve Rotheram, said:
“I launched the Young Person’s Guarantee with a clear purpose – to send all our young people a promise of hope. Because, for far too long, too many people in our area have been held back from fulfilling their potential, not by a lack of talent, but a lack of opportunity.
“As Mayor, I’m doing everything in my power to connect people to opportunities and attract more jobs to our area but, to get to the front of the queue, we need to ensure local people have the skills and experience to seize the opportunities that lie ahead for our economy.
“The investments we’re making have helped to create tens of thousands of jobs and training opportunities for people in our area. I’m incredibly proud of this achievement, however, what really matters to me is that we can improve people’s life chances. Fortunately, devolution has given us the opportunity to do just that by investing in programmes that will make a real, tangible difference to people’s lives. It’s proper levelling up in action.”
National statistics show youth unemployment at 531,000 in September 2023 – up 131,000 on last year – while 6.1% of 18–24-year-olds in the city region were claiming out of work benefits, compared to the national average of 4.8%.
To address this problem, the Mayor and the Combined Authority have created a series of programmes to deliver the pledge, including an Apprenticeship Levy transfer scheme.
The Mayor launched a drive last year to encourage big employers to transfer tens of millions of pounds of unspent Apprenticeship Levy funding to help smaller firms fund local training.
To date the Combined Authority has helped to transfer £3.2m of unspent levy funding to create 695 apprenticeships.
In addition, using the Flexible Support Fund, a new network of youth hubs has helped more than 3,500 people to access a range of services-such as neurodiversity support, job search and employer sessions.
The latest funding announcement will provide young people with direct access to dedicated advisors from the existing Ways to Work programme and business support organisations.
In addition, it will identify and address wider barriers to employment such as mental health support, confidence, volunteering and resilience building. A new access area on the Be More app will help young people access support.
Co-ordinated activities will bring together young people looking for work and employers seeking talent. The scheme and wage incentives are expected to begin early in 2024.