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Olympic Delivery Authority

Volume 504: debated on Monday 18 January 2010

7. What recent discussions she has had with the Olympic Delivery Authority on the implementation of its commitment to maximise local employment opportunities; and if she will make a statement. (310885)

I am a member of the ODA’s employment and skills board, which is responsible for overseeing the creation of the skills and employment legacy. One of the most important aspects of the legacy is ensuring that local people and young people working in businesses as part of the supply chain have the opportunity to leave their Olympic-related job better trained and with an increased chance of staying in work.

My right hon. Friend will be aware of those trade unions that have been complaining about the lack of local people being trained—such training would be beneficial in the years to come. Will she meet the trade unions in question to find out what the problems are and to try to help to solve them?

I am surprised by my hon. Friend’s observation. The apprenticeship level to which we are committed for the Olympic park is in fact three and a half times the regional average, and every single supplier understands the obligation on them. Alan Ritchie, the general secretary of the Union of Construction, Allied Trades and Technicians, recently observed that the Olympics have one of the best regulated construction sites in Britain. Principles of co-operation have been signed between the ODA and the TUC. If there are any concerns, however, we will of course do everything that we can to address them.