Steve Rotheram, Mayor of the Liverpool City Region – himself a former apprentice bricklayer – has launched a new scheme to help local apprentices made redundant, or at risk, because of Coronavirus find new employment or training opportunities.
Delivered through Be More, the Combined Authority’s apprenticeship portal, the initiative will help support redundant apprentices to find a new suitable apprenticeship or explore alternative study options.
With the Government furlough scheme now coming to an end, experts have warned about the threat of large-scale redundancies, with apprenticeships seen as being especially vulnerable. Back in June, Mark Dawe the chief executive of the Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) told the House of Commons Education Select Committee that some of the country’s largest organisations were talking about massive reductions in the number of apprenticeships.
Research by the Sutton Trust** in May, at the height of the lockdown, indicated that nationally 61% of apprentices had either been furloughed, had their off- the -job training suspended or been made redundant. It is likely that the situation will have worsened further since this research was undertaken.
Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region said:
“As a former apprentice myself, my heart goes out to everyone who has lost their apprenticeship because of Coronavirus. I still use many of skills, qualifications and experience I gained as an apprentice in my job now.
“I know all too well how people are held back, not by a lack of talent and hard work, but a lack of opportunity. I am not going to let that happen here.
“I’m launching this initiative to do as much as we can to ensure none of these apprentices are left behind by the economic shock this pandemic has caused. Through Be More, we will help them into new apprenticeships, or find them opportunities to study at some of the fantastic colleges we have across the region.”
“I have benefited so much from someone taking a chance on me as a young apprentice. Our young people deserve that same opportunity.”
Apprentices can access support by visiting http://www.be-more.info or by contacting the Combined Authority on firstname.lastname@example.org.