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Unified approach 'needed on youth unemployment'
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There are no quick fixes to the longstanding problem of youth unemployment, it has been claimed.
Gerwyn Davies, public policy adviser at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), said real solutions to the challenge of getting more British citizens into jobs will take time.
He was commenting after Ed Miliband promised to curb economic immigration into the UK in order to ensure more British workers are able to find jobs.
The Labour leader commented that some recruitment agencies in the UK are now almost exclusively used by foreign labourers looking for work in the UK.
He pledged to take action against such companies, which actively seek workers from overseas at the expense of local talent.
However, the CIPD doubts whether such an approach will achieve much in terms of reducing the level of youth unemployment in the UK.
"What is required is a culture change which sees policy makers, education providers and employers engaging consistently and with commitment to improve the academic, technical and, crucially, the employability skills of young people," Mr Davies stated.
"Only by doing this do we have a chance of getting to a point where employers no longer tell us so readily that they turn to migrant labour because they prefer the skills, experience and work ethic to that they see when they recruit more locally."
He noted that UK employers often have vacancies for new staff, but they are unwilling to hire people who do not have the skills and attitudes required to drive growth and performance for their organisations.
Mr Davies said this is one of the reasons why the CIPD has launched its 'Learning to Work' campaign.
The initiative will see the HR body working with employers to bridge the gap between education and work, making young people more ready for the workplace.
It will also help employers to ensure work is more 'young-people ready', enabling them to break the vicious cycle of no-experience, no-work.
Posted by Stephen Wilkinson
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