Friday, 30 April 2010

Future Jobs Fund; saved!

Not surprisingly ACEVO is rather partial to this brilliant scheme- having invented it! But it has been a huge success , with hundreds of third sector organisations now employing young people on the scheme. Its essential if we are to avoid the scandal of long term youth unemployment we saw in the 80s.

And it will continue! ACEVO members had spotted that whilst the Labour manifesto had promised to continue the scheme the Tories and Lib Dems were rather quieter, prompting fears amongst members they might scrap it in the emergency budget if they took power. I know both Theresa May and David Freud are great friends of the third sector, so we wrote to all the parties' work and pensions spokesmen to ask them to clarify their commitment to FJF two weeks ago and to spell out their positions on the scheme, which has created 70,000 jobs in the voluntary sector.

Labour said it would extend the fund until 2012 and the Liberal Democrats said they would honour existing funding commitments until 2011. And Theresa May, shadow work and pensions secretary, wrote to ACEVO on Wednesday saying her party had "no plans to change existing Future Jobs Fund commitments".

Nevertheless, May did not commit to extending the scheme after funding expires in March 2011. She said the Tories would review the fund to see whether it delivered "long-term sustainable work".

The fund pays employers to hire young people on at least the minimum wage for six months. But many of our members have plans to carry on with employment and training for these young people for longer. As we should.

So quick thinking by ACEVO has ensured it will continue for now. Our lobbying will now turn to extending the commitment for as long as unemployment remains such a problem. And frankly I can't see any Party in power wanting to have increasing levels of youth unemployment so they will have to have some scheme in place to promote opportunities for work and training.

So the sector owes us a big Vote of Thanks for spotting this. ACEVO; Ever vigilant! Ever alert!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Are you still thinking this?