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Big Issue plans to tackle skills gap

·2-min read

Four out of five people believe the UK has a skills gap, new research suggests.

The Big Issue Group said its survey of 1,700 adults showed strong support for its plans to launch a new recruitment service supporting marginalised people to find work.

Big Issue Recruit, which will launch in the autumn, will promote skills and training.

Jack Parsons, CEO of The Youth Group
Jack Parsons, chief executive of The Youth Group (Louise Haywood-Schiefer/The Big Issue Group/PA)

Three out of four respondents to the survey said the best way to support marginalised people back into jobs is through providing training programmes to develop specific skills.

Almost a third of people aged between 18 and 24 who were surveyed said they believe there are fewer opportunities for young adults to access jobs compared with 30 years ago.

Jack Parsons, chief executive of The Youth Group, which is supporting the initiative, said: “We have to do more to help young people through such tough times and support them to feel like they can ‘win’ at work, in their communities and in society.”

The Big Issue founder Lord John Bird said: “This is an important and exciting next step for Big Issue Group. When I set up the magazine, my aim was to slit the throat of poverty, but this can only be done if we are focusing on innovation, investment and prevention, rather than always having to deal in emergencies.

“This new strategy and focus will not only help us support even more people, but it will also enable us to change lives.”

Big Issue Group chief executive Paul Cheal said: “Our new Big Issue Group five-year strategy brings all our work together – from vendor support to parliamentary campaigns, to social investment and our campaigning journalism.

“This is an exciting next step for Big Issue Group, which will enable us to support even more people than ever before.”

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