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Thursday, May 23, 2024

Sunak Short-Changing Scotland on Youth Jobs

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New figures show that of the 250,000 jobs the Chancellor promised would be created by the Kickstart scheme across the UK, only 1.5% have been started in Scotland since it launched ten months ago.

Based on population share, Scotland should have around 20,500 of the 250,000 Kickstart jobs promised by the UK government – but only 3,830 have been started and 10,740 made available to Scotland.

An answer to SNP MP Stephen Flynn’s Parliamentary Question on the Kickstart scheme revealed that, in total so far across the UK, 148,000 jobs have been made available for young people to apply for through the Kickstart Scheme, but only 44,000 young people have started the jobs.

Commenting, the SNP’s Shadow Business spokesperson, Stephen Flynn MP, said:

“These figures are an embarrassment for Rishi Sunak and they show, once again, how Westminster is failing Scotland.

“The Tories may boast about a so-called ‘union of equals’ – but that is exposed as hollow bluster by these figures showing that Scotland has just 1.5% of the total Kickstart jobs promised by the Chancellor last year. 

“Rishi Sunak promised this scheme would deliver 250,000 jobs, but in Scotland only 3,830 jobs have started.

“Given young people are disproportionately employed in the sectors most affected by the pandemic, it is shocking that ten months into the scheme they are nowhere near to filling the 250,000 jobs promised.

“And it is proof positive that, even as the Tories try to trample on devolved responsibilities, Westminster is simply incapable of delivering for Scotland.

“While the UK government drags its feet on tackling youth unemployment, the SNP Government in Scotland is delivering the Young Person’s Guarantee and ensuring that every young person between 16 and 24 in Scotland has the opportunity to go to university or college, get a place on an apprenticeship, training or work experience programme, secure a job or participate in a formal volunteering programme.

“Westminster isn’t working for Scotland or its young people, who deserve better than this.

“It is only with full welfare and employment powers through independence that we can deliver a strong and equal recovery for Scotland, and more opportunities for our young people.”

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