We welcome the wide-ranging report from the House of Lords Youth Unemployment Committee, ‘Skills for every young person’ and are delighted to see them backing our calls for an Opportunity Guarantee, offering all young people aged 16 to 24 the guarantee of a job, education or training.
It is vital that this is extended to every young person, not just those claiming Universal Credit, to ensure that it reaches even the most marginalised groups of young people who often face multiple barriers to securing employment and training. The Committee also echoes our calls for the Kickstart scheme to be extended and its eligibility broadened out to ensure it reaches those who could benefit most. With long-term unemployment rising even as demand recovers, now is the opportunity to transition to a more targeted Kickstart Plus, which would create opportunities for the long-term unemployed and marginalised young people experiencing multiple barriers to work.
At Youth Futures Foundation, our mission is to improve employment outcomes for young people from marginalised backgrounds. The report’s focus on experiences of disadvantaged groups is vital since the pandemic has highlighted and deepened disparities, with ONS data showing that the fall in employment was four times higher for young Black people and nearly three times higher for young Asian people during the pandemic.
This report is a positive step forward in improving young people’s prospects in the post-Covid economy and we are delighted to see that the Committee has embraced the Youth Employment Group’s recommendations for an opportunity guarantee for every young person, as well as calling on the Government to extend and reform the Kickstart scheme, extend employer apprenticeship incentives, the lifetime skills guarantee and much more.
Read the full report here: House of Lords – Skills for every young person – Youth Unemployment Committee (parliament.uk)