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Union officer debates future of youth careers services

 

Caroline and Steph Connexions
Career opportunities under threat: Caroline Lucas and Steph Powell

A Unison trade union officer for the Connexions youth careers service and Green Party candidate in the May local elections was part of a team that took part in a debate with MPs in Westminster on the future of youth careers services.

Steph Powell, one of the Green Party’s three candidates in Queen’s Park, central Brighton, took part in the debate in Portcullis House adjacent to the Houses of Parliament.

Steph has been acting as the union spokesperson for the Connexions youth service, whose funding is being cut by Tory-controlled Brighton & Hove City Council.

Caroline Lucas Green Party leader MP for Brighton Pavilion joined Steph in the debate.

Caroline has been consistent in her condemnation of the Government’s decision to cut the area-based grant that has helped to fund the Connexions service.

She said: “Tory-controlled Brighton and Hove City Council have been all too eager to cut support to the Connexions service following the coalition’s reckless decision to reduce the area-based grant that helped fund the service.

“With youth unemployment rising at an alarming rate, the decision is a slap in the face for a whole generation in desperate need of help and training to access the jobs market.”

Steph said: “The proposed changes to the Connexions service in Brighton & Hove leave the majority of teenagers out in the cold, since the emphasis will focus on the very small number of young people deemed to be ‘employable’.

“This can only result increases in teenage crime, pregnancy and homelessness, not to mention encouraging more alcohol abuse and mental health issues.

“The coalition’s short sightedness in making these cuts centrally and the council’s eagerness to implement them locally will create a forgotten generation of under-achievers if the valuable, preventative work delivered by Connexions is not highlighted and retained”.

 

For more informatiom please contact the Brighton and Hove Green Party office on 01273 766 670.

 

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