Training agency to tackle youth unemployment

Published : 16/07/2012 00:00

Training agency to tackle youth unemployment

Council chiefs in Leeds will be asked to approve the establishment of the Leeds Apprenticeship Training Agency (ATA) at a meeting of the executive board this week.

As part of plans to support businesses and help more young people into work, the proposed Leeds Apprenticeship Training Agency will aim to match young people, who are job ready and want to find careers, to apprenticeships with local businesses who want to skill and grow their workforce.

As part of the recently announced City Deal, Leeds City Council, along with its partners have new powers to enable and deliver further investment in skills to support business growth and create new opportunities for young people.

The council will work in partnership with Leeds City College operating as a jointly owned and separate company limited through guarantee. The council and the college have already demonstrated their commitment to the project and with the new City Deal that was announced last week, the city is in a fantastic position to progress this.

The ATA will support small businesses that are unable to take the risk of directly employing an apprentice themselves, and therefore opens up a much larger group of businesses to the apprenticeship market.

The establishment of the ATA forms part of a wider range of opportunities in Leeds which are being developed to support both businesses and young people to gain skills and start work. .

Councillor Adam Ogilvie, Leeds City Council executive member for leisure and skills said:

“With the exciting news last week about opportunities through the City Deal, we are well placed to start the Apprenticeship Training Agency in the autumn.

“We need to move beyond the traditional offers from education and employment programmes and offer a wider range of opportunities across the city, with apprenticeship being at the core of what we do.

“There has been a significant increase in youth unemployment since the recession and it is important that we do something to combat this, and working with local, smaller companies is one way of doing this.

“We already have some fantastic apprenticeships running in the city, however, we want to make sure that many more employers and young people engage with this opportunity to start their careers.

“The Leeds ATA would represent a major investment in the city’s young people and support local businesses, and continue the significant growth in apprenticeships which the city saw last year."

For media enquiries, please contact;
Cat Milburn, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 247 4450