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LDA employment and skills investment totals £75 million this year


The London Development Agency (LDA) is investing £75 million this year in programmes to support Londoners into jobs, provide training, advice, support and help businesses and those people hit hardest by the recession.

The LDA has been tasked under the Mayor’s leadership and within the framework set out by the London Skills and Employment Board (LSEB) with cutting the number of long term workless in London and helping London’s low paid to progress in work.

Under the new Government Skills Strategy, released today, the LDA and LSEB have responsibility for developing an effective plan for London. We will be working with a number of local and national agencies to deliver on this objective and simplify services for London’s people and its employers.

We are investing £75 million in employment and skills programmes, this includes £48 million through the Mayor’s Economic Recovery Action Plan:

* £24 million is being invested over the next two years in programmes like the the West London Employability Project and East London Works to address structural employment issues, long term worklessness and support businesses
* £24 million is being invested through the LDA’s ESF programme to tackle youth unemployment and its causes through programmes to provide training, apprenticeships and jobs to assist young people to make the most of the opportunities available in London.
* The LDA expects more than 20,000 people to benefit from these new programmes and of those, 10,000 are expected to take up further training or jobs.

The LDA is also maximising the employment benefits of the 2012 Olympic Games by using the opportunities they provide to assist people into training and provide support with accessing work opportunities. This includes an £7.5 million investment in Personal Best a London-wide volunteering programme which gives people the skills they need to get into jobs.

To help inform the LDA’s strategic investment strategy going forward, the agency has commissioned a suite of five research reports to assist it and its partners better understand London’s labour market and identify new and innovative ways of getting more value from its investments.

The first of these independent research reports commissioned by the LDA is published today. Entitled Staying In, Moving Up: Employment Retention and Progression in London, the report shows that, despite significant progress made, too many Londoners still are trapped in a ‘low pay, no pay’ cycle with one in two out of work Londoners back on benefits within six months of leaving benefits.

Stephen Evans, Director of Skills and Youth at the London Development Agency says:

"The research released today will enable the LDA and our stakeholders to make improvements to our programmes and projects and ensure we are getting better value from our investments in this area. Many of the findings will be used to inform the development of our projects in 2010 and 2011, including post-employment support, skills training and career advancement.

"To address many of the employment problems faced by out of work Londoners and those in low-paid work we have shifted the value of the LDA’s investment in employment and skills investment to focus on sustained jobs and progression into better paid work.

“The report outlines the scale of the challenge we face in ensuring that Londoners are not only helped into work, but supported to stay in employment and progress into better jobs and careers. Too many Londoners cycle between low pay and no pay. The highly paid are five times more likely to get training than the low paid, which limits their progression. These are challenges the LDA and our partners are committed to tackling.”

The independent report, commissioned by the LDA, focuses on the barriers Londoners face to get into sustainable employment and move into better jobs. The report also sets out the challenges and barriers London faces in achieving this and brings together best practice from across the UK and the rest of the World.

These findings will now be used to inform the design of the London Development Agency’s programmes and projects in 2010 and 2011 to ensure we better address the employment and skills needs of Londoners in the future.

Other key findings in the report include:

* Two in five Londoners of working age are either out of work or in low paid jobs
* Nearly one in ten low-skilled, low-paid Londoners receives job-related training whilst in work, compared to one in two working in lower managerial and professional occupations
* Certain groups experience disproportionately high levels of unemployment such as disabled people (45%), young people (46%), Bangladeshi/Pakistani ethnic minorities (47%) and lone parents (43%)
* People who experience long-term barriers to sustained employment and wage rises are more likely to be female, have certain disabilities, work part-time or be in low-paid occupations.


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