Constance marks first year in office

Published on Monday, 17 December 2012 09:19
Posted by Vicki Mitchem

A year on from the appointment of the UK's first Youth Employment Minister, youth unemployment in Scotland is down 4.3 per cent over the year.

The latest Labour Market statistics also show that on all three key measures – youth unemployment, youth economic inactivity and youth employment – Scotland now leads the UK.

Highlighting forthcoming positive announcements on Skills Academies, Angela Constance pointed to significant progress ahead of 2013, when £15 million through the Employer Recruitment Incentive and £25 million European structural funding will be invested in the future of young Scots.

While the picture on youth employment in Scotland is better than the UK, Ms Constance also stated there is no room for complacency. She said:

"The most recent employment figures demonstrate significant progress in getting young people into employment or training, and paint a positive picture of Scotland when compared to the UK as whole. On all three key measures – youth unemployment, youth economic inactivity and youth employment – we are now leading the UK; however, there is no room for complacency.

"While Scotland remains without the job creating powers that independence would bring, we will do everything within our power to maximise opportunities for those aged 16-24. Despite cuts from the Westminster government, we have protected college places and ensured that entry to higher education remains based on the ability to learn, not the ability to pay.

"The coming year will bring fresh impetus as we launch the new Employer Recruitment Incentive which will give financial support to small companies willing to give young people a job. This is backed by £15 million of Scottish Government funding and will be supported by £25 million EU funding. We know that the majority of employers want to help tackle youth unemployment and I want to support them in embedding the development of young talent into their business.

"2013 will bring challenges, but also opportunities. I plan to update Parliament in full in early January and want to see Scotland continuing to make significant progress on tackling youth unemployment in the next year."

Source: ©Scottish Government

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