LGA supports the role of local government in the employment and skills system

Councils must have a role to play in the government’s post-16 skills and education bill, otherwise employment and skills support in local areas will become even more fragmented, the Local Government has warned. Association (LGA).

The bill is currently in committee stage, with the LGA calling on MPs to accept a Lords amendment to the bill that would ensure that boards can work with businesses and continuing education providers.

According to them, this would help municipalities to play a role in providing a more coherent local supply of skills to young people and adults, giving them the best chances to upgrade their skills and move towards quality jobs.

As part of its efforts, the government has recognized that municipal authorities combined with decentralized competency functions should be included in the development of the Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIP), but the LGA calls on the government to extend this involvement in boards of other parts of the country as well.

According to the LGA, English local authorities which do not have decentralized powers should be enshrined in the bill, so that they can play a key role in working with companies and continuing education providers to develop LSIPs that will help plan technical skills within a local area. .

Boards play a vital role in local skills systems and hold unique skills, local labor market and economic development expertise that is vital for LSIPs. Their involvement will be crucial in linking LSIPs to other local arrangements in order to create a coordinated offering that works and meets the direct needs of local areas.

LGA analysis shows that if the combined councils and authorities had the powers to plan, command and oversee a common employment support system with their local partners, it could result in an additional 8,500 people and bring 420 million pounds to the economy. each year in an average combined authority area.

Cllr Simon Henig, vice president of the LGA People and Places Council, said: “Throughout the pandemic, local governments were trusted to coordinate employment, training and business support for their region. The councils want to build on this as we help our communities recover.

“The councils know their communities better and it is vitally important that local authorities are given a greater role in this bill so that they can work in partnership to help people find jobs or training. .

“At a time when the government is rightly discussing devolution of powers to local areas as part of the upgrade white paper, it is crucial that this is not compromised by setting aside local government expertise. in the provision of skills and employment support.

“With the right resources and powers, and the ability to work in partnership with the national government and others at an early stage, the councils can help well-meaning but disconnected national programs keep people working and companies recruiting.” . “