On 8 July 2020 government published their policy response to the COVID pandemic, announcing a package of support worth a total of £30bn. This included specific strands of activity for employment and skills support to help people back into the labour market as soon as possible. Importantly there is a recognition that young people are particularly vulnerable due to their lack of experience in work. There are three strands of activity:
- to support people in finding jobs
- to enable them to gain the skills they need to get a job
- to provide targeted help for young people to get into work
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The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to create new job placements for 16 to 24 year olds claiming Universal Credit who are at risk of long term unemployment.
- 100% of the National Minimum Wage (or the National Living Wage depending on the age of the participant) will be paid to the employer for 25 hours per week for a total of 6 months
- The funding also includes associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions
- Employers can spread the start date of the job placements up until the end of December 2021. The employer will also receive a grant of £1,500 per placement to cover set up and other related costs such as equipment, DBS checks, training, careers guidance
Hampshire County Council has committed to provide a minimum of 30 direct Kickstart placements across the organisation (including maintained schools), starting between November 2020 and December 2021.
Where possible we will support our priority cohorts in Hampshire which include Care Leavers and SEN young people (claiming UC)
The Employment and Skills Hub will also act as an intermediary for public sector employers in Hampshire who intend to support the Kickstart scheme but will offer less than 30 places each. Skills and Participation will offer a programme of wrap around support for these employers. This offer would include District Councils; Police; Fire Service; Education; Health and Social Care and the Voluntary and Community sector.
For more information and to find out how you can get involved in the Kickstart Scheme please email firstname.lastname@example.org.