Response to Plan for Jobs expansion announced at Conservative Party Conference on 4 October


04 10 2021


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Naomi Clayton, acting director at Learning and Work Institute, said:
The Chancellor’s announcement on the extension of several Plan for Jobs schemes is welcome. With the closure of the furlough scheme, long term unemployment up by 45% and a record number of vacancies, it is vital to continue supporting people into the labour market. A new offer for those aged over 50, who were more likely to be on the furlough scheme as it ended and are far more likely to end up long-term unemployed, is essential to help avoid a long-term unemployment crisis for older workers. But support needs to go further and reach people beyond Universal Credit. With the number of long-term unemployed 16-24 year olds rising by a third over the pandemic, the extension of Kickstart is welcome but action is needed to refocus on young people most a risk of becoming long-term unemployed. Improvements are also needed to reverse the fall in the proportion of young people starting an apprenticeship, within a longer term Youth Opportunity Guarantee to support young people to access a job, an apprenticeship, education, or a high quality training opportunity.