75,000 Additional Training Places for Long-Term Unemployed


As part of its new £500 million plan, the Government is to spend £83 million over the next two years to offer high quality training places to around 75,000 people who have been out of work for more than six months, to help get them back into work.

Along with the new money already announced to help those facing redundancy as a result of the downturn, the overall investment will mean that 100,000 people will be given support to help them back into work.

The proposals aim to give people confidence that if they lose their jobs, there will be help available so they can improve their skills or gain new ones so that they are fit for the jobs of the future.

Today’s proposals will see 75,000 new training places in colleges and other training providers and are part of a radical shake-up of further education (FE). This will allow people to train while they are looking for a job and carry on with their course once they get into work. The changes also mean that FE colleges will be paid to get people into work.

John Denham, the Skills Secretary, said:

“We will not make the mistakes of the past and just leave people abandoned on the dole, or push them onto sickness benefit.

“We will do everything we can to help people through this tough time and help them prepare for the economic upturn when it comes.

“We know that people whose skills are up to date are much more likely to find a good job, and that employers with well trained staff survive a recession much better than firms which don’t invest in skills.

“This is an investment in the long-term future of our people and our economy. In the future there will be far fewer jobs for people with no skills but the number of high-skilled jobs will grow. Britain will need skilled workers if it is going to compete.”

Training programmes will be employment-focused, offering a range of opportunities to gain skills. There will be programmes to prepare for job entry, and more specific training in new skills that equip people for new jobs.

Colleges and other training providers will offer flexible courses that do not conflict with availability for work or delay entry to the job market. So people who enrol on training courses will not be put in the position of having to choose between a job or completing their training. They will be able to combine the training with active job search, take a new job as soon as they are able to find one, and, with their new employer’s agreement, be supported to complete the training part-time in work after they have started their new job.

Payments to colleges and training providers will relate to the training delivered, but will have a clear performance objective to help customers gain sustainable employment. 


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