Government launches £2 billion Kickstart employment scheme to create hundreds of thousands of new jobs

The Government has launched the landmark £2 billion Kickstart employment scheme, which is set to create hundreds of thousands of new jobs for young people.

The initiative aims to create “hundreds of thousands” of “fully subsidised jobs for young people across the country”, according to the Government.

Under the scheme, employers can apply for funding to launch six-month placements for people aged 16 to 24 who are claiming Universal Credit and are at risk of long-term unemployment as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Successful employers will receive funding for 100 per cent of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum auto-enrolment pension contributions. Employers will be able to top up wages if required.

The Government will also pay employers £1,500 to cover support and training for people on a Kickstart placement, such as uniforms and other set-up costs.

The smallest of businesses – defined as those offering fewer than 30 placements – will be invited to apply as a collective through an intermediary, such as a Local Authority or Chamber of Commerce.

Therese Coffey, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, said: “As we launch our £2 billion Kickstart programme, putting young people at the heart of our revival – we are urging businesses to get involved in this innovative scheme and take advantage of the enormous pool of potential out there.

“There is no limit on the number of opportunities we’ll open up through Kickstart and we’ll fund each one for six months as part of Our Plan for Jobs to create, support and protect jobs.”

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