Chancellor Rishi Sunak is set to hit the phones to drum up support among businesses for his new Kickstart scheme.The initiative, designed to prevent h
Chancellor Rishi Sunak is set to hit the phones to drum up support among businesses for his new Kickstart scheme.
The initiative, designed to prevent huge numbers of young people from becoming stuck in an unemployment rut, is part of a plan for jobs which will see another £30billion ploughed into the economy.
Sunak said: ‘I urge every employer, big or small, national or local, to hire as many Kickstarters as possible.’
Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Kickstart scheme is designed to prevent huge numbers of young people from becoming stuck in an unemployment rut
The Chancellor will today start calling the bosses of some of Britain’s biggest companies to persuade them to sign up.
It is understood that Barratt, the UK’s biggest housebuilder, is considering hiring more young people in addition to its usual trainees, as is Barclays Bank.
And Sainsbury’s and BT are among the big-name firms which have expressed an interest. Applications open in August.
Gregg Scott, of contractor Interserve, said: ‘We look forward to the details. If employers hire a 16-24-year-old who is also an apprentice, they may be able to get their wages funded as well as receive an apprenticeship bonus – a massive incentive.’
Leisure firm Gravity, which runs trampoline parks in shopping malls and plans to open three sites this year, jumped at the chance, and gaming company Bidstack is hoping the scheme could help it. Cheshire-based McCombie Construction added that it would be looking into the scheme.
Under Kickstart, a £2billion fund will create hundreds of thousands of six-month placements.
Employers will be allowed to claim the minimum wage from the fund. For a 24-year-old, the grant will be around £6,500.
Coronavirus has had a hugely detrimental impact on the prospects of young people.
Research from the Institute for Fiscal Studies showed that 22 per cent of people aged 22-25 in their first full-time job were in sectors that shut down during lockdown.
Sunak said: ‘We cannot lose this generation, so today, I am announcing a new programme to give hundreds of thousands of young people, in every region and nation of Britain, the best possible chance of getting on and getting a job.’
The first ‘Kickstarters’ will begin their jobs in the autumn. Sunak said the £2billion fund could be extended, and that there would be ‘no cap’ on places available.
Kallum Pickering, economist at investment bank Berenberg, said: ‘The measures taken can only help to support jobs, demand and growth.
‘However, if the UK suffers a major second wave that requires lockdowns or the reclosing of shops, restaurants and the like, the measures will prove futile.’