Kent County Council hosted building firms from across the South to discuss how the council can ensure that skills are placed at the heart of the construction industry’s agenda.
The event, organised by the Sector Skills Council for the building industry, CITB-ConstructionSkills and the Local Government Information Unit (LGiU), saw representatives from the industry alongside local councillors and local training providers meet to debate how local firms and the council can help the building industry to get the country moving.
One of the biggest issues highlighted was how to bring young people through the system in order to support the growth of the industry in the region.
Dr Jonathan Carr-West, Director of LGiU, commented,
“LGiU is pleased to come and find out what Kent are doing to stimulate the building industry. Figures show that Kent is one of the powerhouses of the nation and is a key driver to economic growth. The council has a clear strategy and ambitious plans, not just for development but also for developing the skills of young people by actively pursuing apprenticeships with some of the largest construction projects in the UK.’
“What areas like Kent really need is more commitment from central Government to support the building industry by removing red tape and by making it easier for the construction industry to bring on new talent by highlighting the number of benefits of working in an exciting sector.”
CITB-ConstructionSkills runs the national Construction4Growth campaign which is an industry campaign calling on the Government to invest in construction as the best route out of recession and back to growth.
Judy Lowe, Deputy Chairman of CITB-ConstructionSkills, commented:
“Now more than ever we need to develop strong partnerships between local government and the construction sector in order to drive growth. Our latest CSN data shows that over the next five years in the South East construction growth is expected to outperform the national average, while local construction employment is forecast to decline to some 15% below its pre-recession peak. Local government needs to come together with the construction industry and training providers to create sustainable, local employment opportunities and today’s event demonstrates their commitment to working together to bring the industry out of its current economic downturn.”
Notes to Editors
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The Local Government Information Unit (LGiU) is an award winning think tank and membership organisation. Our mission is to strengthen local democracy to put citizens in control of their own lives, communities and local services.
Our team of policy experts and other staff provides practical policy advice, learning and development programmes, events and conferences, consultancy and other resources to our members and other organisations.
CITB-ConstructionSkills is the Industrial Training Board (ITB) for the construction industry in Great Britain (Scotland, England and Wales). We are working to ensure that construction employers have the right skills, in right place, at the right time by investing funds and providing a wide range of industry-led skills and training solutions.
We are also a partner in ConstructionSkills, the Sector Skills Council (SSC) for the UK construction industry, and we are raising employer engagement in training, providing labour market insights on future skills needs and developing standards and qualifications for the sector. For more details on our work please visit: www.cskills.org.