EMPLOYMENT: GOVERNMENT FAILURE TO DELIVER APPRENTICESHIPS ‘NOT ACCEPTABLE’ 

Young volunteers who aspire to apprenticeships at Loch Lomond National Park. Top picture: a Group of West Dunbartonshire Council apprentices.

By Lucy Ashton

Jackie Baillie, MSP for Dumbarton Constituency, has said that the Scottish Government is ‘failing the young workers of Scotland’ and ‘failing to build for Scotland’s future’ as it has been revealed that the government is to miss its own targets for apprentice numbers.

In response to a Parliamentary Question on the subject, Business Minister Jamie Hepburn confirmed that the SNP government would not reach its target of 30,000 apprenticeship starts for 2020.

Jackie Baillie, pictured right,  has said that this failure of the government has demonstrated a lack of ambition for the young people of Scotland and has called on the government to bring forward a plan that invests in infrastructure whilst boosting apprenticeships and jobs.

The MSP said:  “It’s simply unacceptable that the SNP thinks it can use the pandemic as a fig leaf to cover up its lack of ambition for the young people of Scotland.

“The pandemic only makes the need for apprenticeships all the more urgent, and young workers need every help from the government to get a foot on the jobs ladder.

“The Scottish Government must stop making excuses and instead bring forward a national plan to tackle the unacceptable levels of fuel poverty in Scotland as well as what Shelter calls ‘Scotland’s housing crisis’. Such a plan will create thousands of apprenticeships and tens of thousands of jobs as part of a sustainable recovery within our economy.

“We must be more ambitious and set out how we will build back by targeting investment where it is most needed”.

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