This week saw the announcement of a significant cash boost for T Levels, which comes as part of the government’s significant programme to help young people recover from the pandemic.
The Government will provide £1,000 for every T Level student hosted by employers. This incentive will encourage employers to offer placements to young people, thereby giving them invaluable first-hand experience in the workplace. As many young jobseekers will be aware, it is that initial workplace experience that is often difficult to secure.
This funding comes as part of a major government drive to give young people a leg up during this difficult time. This includes the £2bn Kickstart Scheme which will create new fully subsidised jobs for young people at risk of long-term unemployment, the £126 million being invested into high quality work placements and training for 16-24 year olds in the 2021/22 academic year, and the £3,000 that will be given to companies who hire a new apprenticeship between 1 April 2021 and 30 September 2021. Further to the recent Queen’s Speech, the Government will also outline new laws for the Prime Minister’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee, which will provide people with the skills they need for employment and opportunities to train throughout their lifetime.
The government’s investment in our young people will ensure that, as we emerge from the pandemic, we level up our country, provide equal opportunities for all, and set young people on the route towards well-paid jobs.
We also saw this week a £166m cash injection for the rapid development of green technologies. This funding package will encourage the rapid development of technologies in carbon capture, greenhouse gas removal and hydrogen, whilst also helping us find solutions to decarbonise the UK’s polluting sectors including manufacturing, steel, energy and waste. In addition, this will help us create over 60,000 jobs across the UK, cut business costs and revitalise our industrial heartlands. Lots of opportunities for existing and emerging innovative businesses in Swindon.
Along with the jobs this investment will create and the benefits it will have on our economy, this will help us reach our ambitious climate targets of reducing UK emissions and moving towards a net zero future.
Finally, our COVID-19 vaccination programme continues to go from strength to strength, with nearly 62 million jabs now being administered and 23 million people having received both jabs. This means that over 4 in 10 adults are now fully vaccinated with two doses.
NHS England has now invited people aged 30 or over to book their COVID-19 vaccination, which I understand will make an additional one million people eligible for a jab. If you are 30 or over, please do book your vaccine at the earliest opportunity. As I have stressed before, getting vaccinated is the most important step we can take to protect, not only ourselves, but those around us.
Now is as important a time as ever to get your vaccine, as new evidence from Public Health England has shown that two doses of the COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective at protecting people against the variant of Covid-19 which was first identified in India. These vaccines are saving thousands of lives and providing us with invaluable protection from this terrible virus. Once again, please come forward for the jab as soon as your age group is called.