MP backs plans for youth jobs

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DAVENTRY MP Chris Heaton-Harris believes the Government’s £1 billion plan to boost youth employment will have ‘great success’ in the district.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg announced the Youth Contract scheme last week in the wake of rising youth unemployment.

In August this year the Prince’s Trust revealed that more than one in six 16 to 25-year-olds in Daventry cannot find a job.

And across Northamptonshire 3,830 18 to 24-year-olds are currently receiving Jobseeker’s Allowance.

The Youth Contract will begin in April 2012 and aims to provide at least 410,000 new jobs during the next three years.

The plans include 160,000 wage subsidies and 250,000 new work experience placements.

In addition there will be at least 20,000 more incentive payments to encourage employers to take on young apprentices in England.

Mr Heaton-Harris told the Daventry Express: “Anything that gets people into work can only be a good thing, and I think we will see more success early on with this scheme in Daventry than in some urban areas of the country.

“This is because we already have a lot of firms who take on apprentices, and this will help them further.

“We are quite lucky in Daventry with employment figures but we can’t take anything for granted and this is very positive.

“It will give a lot of younger people the chance to get their foot in the door and gain lots of new skills.”

Mr Clegg said the invesment will ‘provide hope’ for thousands of young people.

He added: “The aim of the Youth Contract is to get every unemployed young person earning or learning again before long-term damage is done.

“This is a £1 billion package and what’s different is it gets young people into proper, lasting jobs in the private sector.

“But it’s a contract, a two-way street. If you sign up for the job, there’ll be no signing on for the dole. You have to stick with it.

“We can’t lose the skills and talent of our young people right when we need them most. We need the next generation to help us build a new economy.”