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Issue:- 28/29 October 2009

First workers start jobs as 2,500 jobs created for the long term unemployed

THE first people have started work in jobs being created for long term unemployed people within the Liverpool City Region.  More than 2,500 jobs will be created across the 6 local authorities after a successful bid by the Liverpool City Region Cabinet and City Employment Strategy Board, working on behalf of Halton, Knowsley, Sefton, St Helens, Wirral and Liverpool councils.

9 new employees started work this week at Fusion 21, a Social Enterprise supporting the work of Housing Associations in the area. The new staff will form part of the neighbourhood support and general maintenance teams for Knowsley Housing Trust. The workers come from Knowsley, Liverpool and St Helens.  A further 15 people started with Arena Housing Group and it’s subsidiaries in Knowsley, St Helen’s and Wirral. These new employees are from right across Merseyside – Halewood, Wirral, Toxteth, Bootle, Wavertree, Tuebrook, Huyton, Walton and West Derby.

Cllr Ron Round, Chair of the City Region Cabinet, said:- “It’s pleasing to see people starting these jobs. Being employed makes the world of difference to people’s quality of life as well as their families. These are the first of 2,500 such people, and I look forward to us eventually reaching that target. The scale of jobs we are planning to create shows one of the benefits of us working together across the City Region to make a real difference.”

These jobs are funded through the Government’s Future Jobs Fund; targeted at long term unemployed people. 100,000 jobs are being created nationally for young people and 50,000 for those living in areas of high unemployment. Individual eligibility will be established by Job Centre Plus.

The councils in the City Region have worked together to identify different types of jobs in a range of sectors, including apprenticeships, the health service and working with children and young people. In addition to the councils, there are a further 100 organisations involved as employers, the majority of which are social enterprises, or in the voluntary or community sector.

The City Employment Strategy Partnership is one of the key elements of the Liverpool City Region multi area agreement signed by the 6 local authorities in January and September. Its aim is to boost employment and skills across the region.

The vision of Liverpool City Region is to be a thriving international City Region by 2030. The Employment and Skills contribution to this will be to ensure a supply of skilled people, improving productivity and getting more people into work.


BUSINESSES in Liverpool and Southport may not be covered by their insurer if a subcontractor’s own policy fails, warns insurance broker Jardine Lloyd Thompson (JLT). In the last 12 months insurers have taken a harder line on policy interpretation, so firms must make sure they are meeting all of their conditions - which may include that subcontractors maintain a certain level of insurance. Many firms are finding their insurers are refusing to cover them because this requirement was not met, says Ged Smith, the Regional Managing Director of JLT’s northwest office.

Ged Smith said:- “At JLT we have seen a number of incidents where the subcontractor’s insurance has not covered an accident and the contractor has been left holding the bag. One case involved a subcontractor working on a building on the side of a slope. The subcontractor had a height warranty and on one side the building was within the limit, but the other, lower side wasn’t. One of the subcontractor’s employees unfortunately fell from the lower side and was killed. The subcontractors claim was repudiated by the insurer and the repudiation was upheld in court, leaving the contractor to shoulder the responsibility.”

Adrian added:- “This is a widespread issue and Southport businesses, especially in the construction sector, may not understand the true implications until there is a claim. They must ensure they always check the details of their subcontractors’ insurance policies, however onerous or time-consuming, and contact an expert if in doubt. Contractors should also take a close look at the terms and conditions of their own policy. If your insurer’s terms sound like you need to police the impossible, don’t sign up to them.”


A new report from the Centre for Cities has found Liverpool is closing the gap between the number of graduates in its workforce, and the share in other major UK cities.  But attempting to retain local university leavers in Liverpool after they graduate is a distraction. Instead, Liverpool needs to focus its efforts on creating more private sector graduate-level jobs.

Between 1995 and 2008 the percentage of graduates in Liverpool’s workforce jumped from 14% to 23%. Liverpool saw the highest increase of any major city outside London. Over the past decade (1995-2008), Liverpool narrowed the gap between its working age graduates and the Core Cities’ average by a 3rd.

Share of graduates in labour force for London and Core Cities

City Share of NVQ4+ in the working age population (1995) Share of NVQ4+ in the working age population (2008) Change in the share of NVQ4+ in the working age population (1995-2008)
London 24.5 37.6 13.1
Liverpool 13.8 23.4 9.6
Leeds 17.7 26.1 8.4
Manchester 17.9 25.1 7.2
Birmingham 15.5 22.4 6.9
Core Cities 17.3 25.7 8.5

Source:- Nomis, Labour Force Survey Annual, 2009; Nomis, Annual Population Survey, 2009

But the Centre for Cities report is calling for Liverpool to drop its current plans for a target to encourage local university leavers to stay put after they graduate. Cities have little influence in the short term over whether graduates stay or leave. University leavers will move to where the best jobs and highest earnings are.  Instead, the Centre for Cities is recommending that Liverpool focuses its efforts on supporting more graduate jobs. This means building on the economic boost provided by European Capital of Culture and the successful regeneration of the city region over the past decade by encouraging greater entrepreneurship, attracting more business investment into the city and supporting innovative growth industries such as digital media and bio-tech.

Dermot Finch, Chief Executive of the Centre for Cities said:- “Graduates across the UK are highly mobile. They move to where the jobs are – and where they can maximise earnings. Liverpool has done well to increase the share of graduates in its workforce. The city now needs to generate more private-sector graduate jobs.”

Liverpool City Council leader Councillor Warren Bradley said:- “We welcome the report as it reinforces a lot of the work we are doing to attract new investment and employment to Liverpool in the key, growth sectors of the British economy. Our ambitions are to create a high-skilled and well paid economy and rapidly raise the skill levels of the workforce. Our schools are delivering the best ever results and almost a quarter of the workforce are now graduates - the biggest rise of any city outside London. But we can – and will – do better.

The investment we have secured in new industries such as biosciences, research, the creative and digital industries and the cultural sectors has helped boost the regional economy and has put in a strong position as we emerge from the recession.  More than 17,000 students graduate from the city’s universities each year and many want to stay and work in Liverpool. We share their confidence in Liverpool and are working extremely hard to create the high-tech, highly skilled economy vital to our future prosperity.”

John Flamson, Director of Strategic Partnerships and Development, University of Liverpool said:- “The University welcomes the report. It is important that we do all we can to increase higher levels skills in the city region in order to grow the knowledge economy. We are pleased that the report recognises that this is not simply about imposing graduate retention targets. We need to work collectively to stimulate demand for higher level skills and to shape patterns of supply that meet the needs of the graduate community and the workforce.”

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