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Youth Contract

Volume 552: debated on Monday 5 November 2012

21. What assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the youth contract; and if he will make a statement. (126318)

The youth contract was introduced in April 2012 to provide additional support worth almost £1 billion to unemployed young people over the next three years. Although it is too early to make any judgments of its effectiveness, we have commissioned an external evaluation of the youth contract to examine delivery and outcomes, and the first report will be available early next year.

I notice that the Minister gives a cautious response. Is it true that millions of pounds that we should be using to get young people into work are sitting unallocated and helping no one, because the Government cannot get employers on board with the youth contract?

A number of young people have been helped by various aspects of the youth contract. Twenty young people in the hon. Lady’s constituency have had work experience as a consequence of it, and another group has been helped into work as a result of the sector-based work academies. I hope that she is doing all she can in her constituency to champion the youth contract and to get more young people into work.