Ben Houchen has urged the region’s businesses to make use of the new Kickstart scheme as he revealed 226 new jobs have been created at 63 companies across Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool as a result of the Tees Valley’s applications to Government.
The Kickstart scheme is a £2 billion fund aimed at creating hundreds of thousands of high-quality 6-month work placements to those aged 16 to 24 who are on Universal Credit and are deemed to be at risk of long-term unemployment.
Tees mayor Houchen is now urging more local businesses to get in touch to make use of the scheme in order to create 500 jobs for the region’s young people.
Through the scheme the Government will pay the wage bill of young person for six months along with employer National Insurance contributions and Mayor Houchen’s team will help businesses to navigate the red tape and apply.
Companies that wish to employ 30 or more young people through the scheme can apply directly to the Government, but firms looking to take on fewer must group together or have another organisation apply on their behalf.
To allow small and medium sized companies in the Tees Valley to access this support and create jobs, Mayor Houchen has pledged to lodge applications on their behalf. Organisations based in Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool that wish to take on a young person for six months should register their interest at https://www.teesvalleybusiness.com/kickstart-tees-valley.
Young people looking for jobs through the scheme should do so through Jobcentre Plus.
Mayor Houchen said: “Being able to provide our young people with a kick start on the career ladder is crucial, especially as their employment opportunities have been some of the worst affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
“We are not wasting any time and I am not making empty promises, I am putting my plan for jobs into action- creating local jobs for local people in Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool.
“We have already had 226 jobs confirmed and we have the opportunity to create hundreds more thanks to the great deal of interest we have received.
“If you as a business can give a young person a chance the Government will pay their wage bill for six months and my team will help you to navigate the red tape and apply for this.
“Think back to the beginning of your career and maybe how difficult it was, now is the time to come together and offer opportunities to hundreds of young people across the region.”