A 'no wrong door' approach to employment and skills
Nov 18 2008 By The Journal
ONE of the architects of the rapidly developing employment and skills strategy in the Tyne & Wear City Region has welcomed the Green Paper "No-one written off" as an important step in a new approach to closer working between government departments, local authorities, partner organisations and employers.
Martin Swales, strategic director of development at North Tyneside Council said: “The most important outcome from this Green Paper will be the impact on individuals. The paper’s success will be measured by the degree to which it makes a difference to those who access the support services available, particularly in terms of the mentoring on offer to steer them through what is often an arduous journey to gaining skills and sustainable work.
“Simplifying the system, providing clearer signposting to provision and the adoption of a ‘no wrong door’ strategy are the fundamentals of the new approach that all players in the city region are signing up to.”
Through the new city region’s employment and skills strategy, individually tailored programmes will be created for each person entering the system – they will not be just a number. The aim will be to support people with personalised, clear and achievable goals. This will ensure they progress through the system, with the added benefit of enhancing motivation and raising aspirations.
The partnership is built on strong working relationships developed between the local authorities, Jobcentre Plus, the Department of Work and Pensions and the Learning and Skills Council, together with extensive work undertaken since the region became an employment and skills City Strategy Pathfinder in 2006.
Councillor Iain Malcolm, chairman of the City Region Interim Employment and Skills Board and leader of South Tyneside Council, said: “The initiatives proposed in this Green Paper have the potential to make a real and positive difference to the lives of local people, and to the prospects of local business.
“We can achieve so much more by working together and the appeal of this exciting new approach is that it is geared towards the strengths and aspirations of the individual. By harnessing these motivating forces, and channelling them towards positive outcomes, we can help people achieve their goals.”
Tyne & Wear City Region includes the cities of Newcastle and Sunderland, plus Gateshead, North Tyneside and South Tyneside as well as the travel-to-work areas in South Northumberland and North County Durham.
Councillor Paul Watson, chairman of the Tyne & Wear City Region Executive Board and leader of Sunderland City Council said: “Working across boundaries on the scale of the Tyne & Wear City Region means we are better placed to influence government and take advantage of initiatives such as those proposed in the Green Paper. Together we can vastly improve people’s prospects of work and prosperity by maximising all the available opportunities to increase people’s skills and help them back into employment.”