A government initiative to boost skills through more support for training and an expansion of apprenticeships was welcomed this morning by Unite, Britain's largest union.
Speaking on the BBC Radio 4 Today programme, Jack Dromey, Unite deputy general secretary, said employers should take their share of the blame for the decline in training and must build initiatives in to help the unemployed in order to win government contracts.
"The problem is that there has been a collapse of apprenticeship training, for example in construction," he said. "It is absolutely right, therefore, that the government now acts.
"The skills we need will range from apprenticeships to language training. That's what is being proposed and I warmly welcome that. To success in the 21st century we need a high skill economy."
"Employers have failed to train," he continued. "It is right, therefore, for the government to provide opportunities, including for those out of work here kin Britain, to get into work."
"The government should also use the power of public procurement to say to employers in future, if you want taxpayers' money in contracts, for example to build the Olympics, then attached to that should be an obligation to train workers who are out of work to get them into work."
Unite was formed on 1st May 2007 from a merger of amicus and the Transport and General Workers Union (T&G)
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Unite Press Office
020 7611 2550
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