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Pledge to create 1,000 new apprenticeships in City and east London by Tower Hamlets’ mayor

PUBLISHED: 18:31 09 November 2017 | UPDATED: 19:25 09 November 2017

Mayor John Biggs:

Mayor John Biggs: "Getting on-the-job training remains a barrier to employment for too many young people." Picture: Kois Miah

Kois Miah 07903656411 mail@koism

A public pledge was made last night to broker 1,000 new apprenticeships across east London and the City by the Mayor of Tower Hamlets.

Packed audience at 'Apprentice Commitment'  launch. Picture: Kois Miah Packed audience at 'Apprentice Commitment' launch. Picture: Kois Miah

John Biggs launched his Mayor’s Apprenticeship Commitment at a glitzy reception at Bethnal Green’s Town Hall Hotel in front of 150 employers.

“Getting on-the-job training remains a barrier to employment for too many young people,” he told the gathering of firms and potential apprentices.

“Creating greater opportunities for young people is one of my main priorities as mayor.

Panel discussion at launch of Mayor's pledge to find 1,000 apprenticeships. Picture: Kois Miah Panel discussion at launch of Mayor's pledge to find 1,000 apprenticeships. Picture: Kois Miah

“We have 72 per employment levels in the East End, while our schools are performing well.

“I’m committed to 1,000 apprenticeships in the next three years, so young people can tap into the benefits of east London’s economic growth.”

It was familiar territory for the mayor and his councillors in the hotel housed in the former Bethnal Green Town Hall in Patriot Square that the local authority sold off 15 years ago.

"Getting on-the-job training remains a barrier to employment for too many young people"

Tower Hamlets Mayor John Biggs

The aim of the ‘Apprenticeship Commitment’ is to tackle east London’s poverty by taking advantage of its current economic growth to create more on-the-job trainee positions.

The pledge aims to build on the record of the council’s ‘WorkPath’ employment programme that has already helped 350 people into jobs since its launch in April, including 100 apprentices.

Cllr Joshua Peck, the council’s cabinet member for work and economic growth, said: “Our aim is to connect the huge economic growth with those people who have previously been left behind.

Cllr Josh Peck: �Apprenticeships can set people up for life. Cllr Josh Peck: �Apprenticeships can set people up for life." Picture: Kois Miah

“Apprenticeships can set people up for life and the council can help business with real opportunities.”

The authority aims to reduce the number of young people who are outside education or training and don’t have jobs.

Some of the fastest population growth in the country has been in Tower Hamlets, with another 100,000 predicted in the next decade. Almost half the recent population rise was in the 25-to-39 age group.

Networking... finding out where job opporunity lies. Picture: Kois Miah Networking... finding out where job opporunity lies. Picture: Kois Miah

So the council is committing to placing apprentices and supporting them on their career paths.

One former apprentice at last night’s launch, Abrahim Zaidoff, now works as an IT technician for We Buy Any Electronics online company.

He didn’t enjoy academic studies, he admits, but badly wanted to get a job. His apprenticeship has given him workplace confidence that he felt he wouldn’t get at university. It was “the right path to take”.

Networking... helping east London's search for careers. Picture: Kois Miah Networking... helping east London's search for careers. Picture: Kois Miah

Another apprentice, Melis Ulosay, started with Fone Doctors technology and repair business and has now been taken on as an officer manager.

The mayor’s pledge is to find 1,000 new apprenticeships, following the 800 created over the last three years by the council’s Growth and Economic Development service.

The project is being run by the Skills Team training company which is persuading local employers to go for “inward investment in people” with trainee placements and by securing vacancies for anyone qualified.

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