Bradford Council's business plan to help create 400 apprenticeships (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
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Bradford Council's business plan to help create 400 apprenticeships
Setting up an Apprenticeship Training Agency and creating an Employment Opportunities Fund as part of a £7.7 million Council-funding programme took one step closer yesterday.
Senior councillors agreed to Bradford Council and Bradford College setting up a joint company to help create 400 apprenticeships within Bradford businesses on an agency basis. In addition members of the executive agreed to form a partnership with social landlord Incommunities to run an intermediate labour market programme to tackle long-term unemployment.
Council leader, Councillor David Green said the Get Bradford Working programme showed the authority’s commitment to investing in the future.
He said: “This Council takes seriously its responsibilities and within the resources available to us, we have come up with an innovative way to help as many people as we can as much as we can. We have still got a hell of a long way to go in terms of creating employment and improve the skills. But what we are beginning to see is that with intelligent leadership from a local authority and putting our money where our mouth is, we are beginning to make a difference.”
He said these were the first two initiatives of the four-pronged programme and that this was laying the groundwork for long-term recovery.
The Apprenticeship Training Agency is a £1.5 million package which is expected to receive some funding through the Leeds City Region as part of the City Deal and a proposal has been submitted to the Department of Business Innovation and Skills. The agency would employ a pool of apprentices and be responsible for their training and aims to help small and medium-sized businesses minimise the risk associated with employing staff more permanently.
The Employment Opportunities Fund has seen the Council allocate £4.5 million to set up an intermediate labour market programme to tackle long-term unemployment, particularly among 18 to 25-year-olds, those 50 or more and people with a disability or work-limiting health condition.
It would see about 350 temporary jobs created over two years, employing participants for 12 months to carry out work that benefits the community and gain experience that will provide a "bridge into work".
Incommunities has agreed to invest more than £1.8 million of resources and funds in the programme to enhance the Council cash.
It is hoped that both programmes will be up and running by the end of the year.