Frank Roy MP
We have a serious problem with unemployment in the Motherwell, Wishaw and Bellshill areas – especially for people aged between 18 and 24 years.
For young people, one of the biggest barriers to getting a job is not having enough experience.
It seems that employers require more and more experience, but how do you get the experience if you don’t have a job?
That’s why, with help from our local Jobcentre Plus, Community Trade Union and local company Suited and Booted, I am launching a new local workplace experience initiative on February 22 called Our Community.
I have asked local employers in the private and public sector to make workplace experience places available to help young people gain the valuable experience they need as they look for work. Taking part is voluntary for the young unemploye but will, I’m sure, be beneficial to them. Anyone unemployed in the Motherwell, Wishaw and Bellshill area who is out of work and aged between 18 to 24, and not in full-time study, is encouraged to apply for the placements.
Employers are asked to make a work placement available, to give young people the experience of being at work. The placements should last for six to eight weeks.
The only request made of employers is to offer a guiding assessment of the young person and, where appropriate, provide a reference for future job applications. There is no obligation for participating employers to offer a job, although I hope some are able to do so.
Once an employer offers a placement to an applicant, a personal adviser at the Jobcentre will arrange a pre-start interview to agree signing arrangements whilst on the placement. They will also agree on travel expenses and any child care costs to be covered.
Assistance on CV writing and interview techniques will be arranged by both Communitas, who are an educational subsidiary of Community Union, and the Motherwell-based Suited and Booted, who specialise in preparing young people for job interviews.
I am organising this programme because I remember what it was like growing up at a time of mass unemployment when millions were out of work. Some people never found a job then and struggled to find work for years afterwards. I don’t want that to happen in our area again. I want to give young unemployed people in the Motherwell, Wishaw and Bellshill areas the best possible chance.
If you are a local firm and would like to find out more and get involved, call my office on 01698 303040.