Lambeth Council is setting up an employment scheme to build vital links between employers, schools, colleges and training organisations. With tens of thousands of jobs on the horizon, the council wants to ensure that local people are well placed to seize the opportunities from major development and regeneration projects across the borough that include Waterloo, Nine Elms and Vauxhall.
The new scheme called Lambeth Working was approved at this week’s Cabinet meeting and will be financed out of existing funds earmarked for employment related activity that the council’s already received through the planning process. Working closely with Jobcentre Plus, Lambeth College and other employment support providers in the borough, Lambeth Working will increase the number of job opportunities for local people. Lambeth council is also working with the neighbouring borough of Wandsworth which shares much of the development around Nine Elms Vauxhall to create a new Joint Coordination Unit to ensure residents from both boroughs can access jobs and training.
Similar schemes in Camden, Greenwich, Tower Hamlets and Newham have proved highly effective by tailoring education and training to the needs of employers so that local people have been able to make the most of new opportunities and increase their skills to progress through work.
Deputy leader of Lambeth council Cllr. Jackie Meldrum said: “Lambeth College, Jobcentre Plus and various local initiatives are already doing fantastic work but with so many new jobs coming through we need a joined up approach if we’re to make the most of the amazing opportunities that are coming our way. The new brokerage scheme does exactly that “ The scale of the regeneration and development in and around Lambeth is huge – we are the opportunity borough and if we get it right to seize those opportunities, it will benefit Lambeth for generations.”
The move comes as a report from London Councils notes a significant imbalance between the skills employers need and the skills jobseekers are being trained in. The report argues that giving local councils a formal brokerage role will ensure that skills provision matches local employment needs.