Council helps get youngsters into work

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APPRENTICE landscape services operatives are being recruited by Amber Valley Borough Council in attempt to attract more young people into employment.

Six new apprentices aged 16 to 24 are currently being enrolled to maintain parks gardens and cemeteries and to carry out street cleaning throughout Amber Valley from March 2013.

The new trainees will be employed for two years and will be given the opportunity to become full time employees if they are successful.

Cllr Martin Tomlinson, Cabinet Member for Green and Thriving Places to Live, said: “We do benefit from a good quality workforce in our Landscape Services teams to deliver important front line services to keep our Borough clean and green.

“However, they are mostly over the age of 40 and it is very difficult for young people to enter the council’s operational workforce, as the posts require significant skills and experience, which recent school leavers are unlikely to possess.

“This new scheme offers the benefit of that established experience to young people, who may be struggling to get a start in paid work.

“Becoming an apprentice will not only give young people access to the training, experience and qualifications that are necessary to access long-term employment, it also prepares them for the rigors of a good hard day’s work for a wage - an essential framework for young people particularly in the present climate.”

The two year rolling programme will involve six new apprentices being enrolled in the first year with a further three operatives being enrolled on a yearly basis.

Whilst it will not be possible to guarantee a permanent position with the Council, any operative vacancies that become available will in future be ring fenced for recruitment from amongst the apprentices. This will thereby provide a real opportunity of long-term employment with the Council.

In addition to the benefits received by the apprentices, the Council will also receive benefit through having a larger operational workforce during the winter period, which should result in an improvement in frontline standards.