Government to launch work academies

The Government will today launch work academies offering training and a guaranteed job interview to up to 50,000 people ahead of new figures set to show another rise in youth unemployment.

Some commentators believe the number of 16 to 24-year-olds out of work will top the one million mark when today's official data from the Office for National Statistics is released.

There were 973,000 unemployed people in the age group last month, a jobless rate of over 20%, leading to calls from unions and campaign groups for Government action.

Employment Minister Chris Grayling said that coupled with the Work Programme and the Work Experience scheme, the new work academies will support up to 150,000 young people over the next few months and 250,000 over the next two years.

Industries covered by the work academies include construction, hospitality, logistics, retail and contact centres, where the Government said there were tens of thousands of job vacancies.

Mr Grayling said: "Sector-based work academies are the next key part of our strategy to tackle youth unemployment. With training, work experience and a guaranteed interview, they will put people at the front of the queue for vacancies that employers are looking to fill."

Under the initiative, employers are being urged to offer work experience placements or guaranteed job interviews.

The Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations (ACEVO) Commission on Youth Unemployment, chaired by Labour MP David Miliband, said today's jobless figures would be a "wake up call" about the future of young people.

Mr Miliband said: "Youth unemployment scars people for life, particularly if it is prolonged, and at today's levels it will be costing the country millions of pounds a week.

"Our aim is to understand the problems we face, arrive at the right solutions, and then act. We must not let the scourge of unemployment leave a permanent mark on the hundreds of thousands of young people living through it today."

Howard Archer, chief UK & European economist at IHS Global Insight, said claimant count unemployment is forecast to have risen by 30,000 in September after rises of 20,300 in August and 33,700 in July, which would be a seventh successive increase and take the number of claimant count unemployed up to a 22-month high of more than 1.6 million.

"While claimant count unemployment is being pushed up by changes made to the benefits system earlier this year, the recent deterioration clearly runs deeper than that.

"The claimant count unemployment rate is expected to have climbed to 5.0% in September from 4.9% in August, 4.8% in June and a low of 4.5% in the five months through to March.

"Furthermore, the number of jobless on the International Labour Organisation (ILO) measure is seen rising by around 90,000 in the three months to August to reach a near 17-year high of 2.54 million. This would see the ILO unemployment rate climb to 8.0%," he said.

"The worry is that, having showed impressive resilience earlier this year, the labour market is now increasingly buckling under serious pressure from weak economic activity and accelerating job losses in the public sector.

"We expect unemployment to continue to rise over the latter months of 2011 and the first half of 2012 as public sector jobs are increasingly pared and private sector companies become more cautious in the face of persistently sluggish economic activity."

Activists from Youth Fight for Jobs, who are recreating the Jarrow March of 75 years ago, will stage a protest in Sheffield today to mark the latest unemployment figures.

They are marching 330 miles to London to demand a program of job creation not "job destruction".

Westminster City Council launched plans to invest up to £180,000 on schemes to help young people classified as 'Neets' - not in education or training - into work.

Brian Connell, cabinet member for business, skills and volunteering, said: "Unemployment can have a brutal impact on young people, particularly those who are at risk of or have been involved in criminal behaviour.

"We need to give our young people the opportunities they so rightly deserve to get out of a cycle of worklessness and dependency on the state, and back into society as functioning members of the community.

"Sitting back and doing nothing risks leaving the next generation behind, and we are not prepared to let that happen to our young people in Westminster."

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: "Now is certainly not the time to be young and looking for work. There is every chance that the Chancellor's austerity measures will be responsible for pushing joblessness amongst those under the age of 24 into the seven-figure bracket.

"Even if the million mark isn't passed in the latest quarterly figures, that depressing milestone will almost inevitably be here very soon.

"With the economic outlook the gloomiest it's been since the end of the recession, and a double-dip beckoning, the bleak prospects facing young jobseekers will be with us for some considerable time to come."

Katja Hall, the CBI's chief policy director, said: "These work academies should help improve the employment chances of those who find it hardest to get a job, as long as they are targeted in areas which need it most.

"With two and a half million people looking for work, tackling unemployment has to be a top priority. Growth alone will not tackle underlying structural unemployment problems, especially in parts of the UK that need a more detailed plan to get people ready for work."

Jonathan Portes, director of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, told BBC Breakfast that growth was needed to create jobs

"It is not a problem with young people or the labour market, it is a problem with the economy as a whole," he said.

"There just isn't enough demand there and unfortunately Government policy, by cutting public sector jobs, is making the problem worse rather than better."

PA

News
Denny Miller in 1959 remake of Tarzan, the Ape Man
people
Arts and Entertainment
Cheryl despairs during the arena auditions
tvX Factor review: Drama as Cheryl and Simon spar over girl band

News
Piers Morgan tells Scots they might not have to suffer living on the same island as him if they vote ‘No’ to Scottish Independence
news
News
i100Exclusive interview with the British analyst who helped expose Bashar al-Assad's use of Sarin gas
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Sport
Angel Di Maria celebrates his first goal for Manchester United against QPR
Football4-0 victory is team's first win under new manager Louis van Gaal
Arts and Entertainment
art
News
newsIn short, yes
Arts and Entertainment
Rob James-Collier, who plays under-butler Thomas Barrow, admitted to suffering sleepless nights over the Series 5 script
tv'Thomas comes right up to the abyss', says the actor
Arts and Entertainment
Calvin Harris claimed the top spot in this week's single charts
music
Sport
BoxingVideo: The incident happened in the very same ring as Tyson-Holyfield II 17 years ago
News
Groundskeeper Willie has backed Scottish independence in a new video
people
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor poses the question of whether we are every truly alone in 'Listen'
tvReview: Possibly Steven Moffat's most terrifying episode to date
News
i100
Life and Style
Cara Delevigne at the TopShop Unique show during London Fashion Week
fashion
News
The life-sized tribute to Amy Winehouse was designed by Scott Eaton and was erected at the Stables Market in Camden
peopleBut quite what the singer would have made of her new statue...
Sport
England's Andy Sullivan poses with his trophy and an astronaut after winning a trip to space
sport
News
peopleThe actress has agreed to host the Met Gala Ball - but not until 2015
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Teaching Assistant for KS1 & KS2 Huddersfield

£50 - £65 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: We are looking for flexible and i...

Teaching Assistant for KS1 & KS2 Huddersfield

£50 - £65 per annum: Randstad Education Leeds: We are looking for flexible and...

Primary Teaching Supply

£130 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Qualified KS2 Supply Teacher r...

Year 1/2 Teacher

£130 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Qualified KS1 Teacher required,...

Day In a Page

These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week
The fall of Rome? Cash-strapped Italy accused of selling its soul to the highest bidder

The fall of Rome?

Italy's fears that corporate-sponsored restoration projects will lead to the Disneyfication of its cultural heritage
Glasgow girl made good

Glasgow girl made good

Kelly Macdonald was a waitress when she made Trainspotting. Now she’s taking Manhattan
Sequins ahoy as Strictly Come Dancing takes to the floor once more

Sequins ahoy as Strictly takes to the floor once more

Judy Murray, Frankie Bridge and co paired with dance partners
Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Alexander Wang pumps it up at New York Fashion Week
The landscape of my imagination

The landscape of my imagination

Author Kate Mosse on the place that taught her to tell stories