Council to work with DWP and local businesses to reduce youth unemployment arising from the pandemic
Essex County Council has responded to the Government’s landmark Kickstart scheme and have been approved by the Department of Work & Pensions as a flagship Gateway provider.
The Kickstart Essex team will support employers to access the scheme, which will provide them funding to offer a young person a six-month Kickstart job.
The Council will work alongside DWP and local employers to support the creation of 600 opportunities for 16-24-year olds in receipt of Universal Credit, and who have been the most affected age group in the current economic climate. Basildon Conservatives are delighted that this Government scheme will help create exciting opportunities for our young people in a challenging employment market and support employers across the Borough to attract new talent into their organisations.
Prior to launching, the Council have already received over 250 Kickstart job offers from 100 businesses in a variety of industries across the county. There are some exciting opportunities for young people in Essex already and these will increase as our economy is able to re-open over the coming months.
Under the Government’s Kickstart scheme, employers will offer young adults eligible for the scheme work opportunities for six months, which will be funded by Central Government. The wage costs of up to 25 hours per week paid at National Minimum Wage (dependent on age), National Insurance contributions and minimum employer auto-enrolment pension contributions will also be funded by Central Government. A £1,500 grant is also available to support the young adults and help them move into sustained employment after they have completed their Kickstart-funded job.
"The Kickstart Essex project will help many employers offer jobs to young adults who could bring new insight and talent to the organisation." ~ Cllr Tony Ball, Cabinet Member for Economic Development
Under the scheme, the Council itself will employ 100 young people directly and will be a gateway for 500 jobs with Essex employers and will offer wraparound support to help young adults build on their existing skills and move in to sustained employment. Prior to launch, a Kickstart team was assembled to develop a support package for businesses, consisting of specialist Youth Caseworkers who will work closely with employers, facilitating access to Kickstart candidates via DWP and appropriate training and support for young participants.
Cllr Tony Ball (Con, Wickford Crouch), Cabinet Member for Economic Development, said: "Essex County Council is committed to supporting our residents and local businesses. The Kickstart Essex project will help many employers offer jobs to young adults who could bring new insight and talent to the organisation. It will aid young adults to develop a new career and learn fresh skills; we hope that some placements may result in long term opportunities. When the Chancellor announced the Kickstart scheme, we were quick to mobilise and apply to be a Gateway for us to help many Essex employers benefit from this Government initiative”
If you are unemployed, aged 16-24 and claiming Universal Credit, you should ask your Work Coach at Jobcentre Plus to see what job opportunities are available nearby.
The Council would be happy to hear from Basildon employers interested in offering Kickstart job opportunities under the scheme. For more information please contact the Kickstart Essex Team at email@example.com.