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Archive for June, 2013

Experience shows apprenticeships work

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

Iexpect it won’t come as any surprise if I tell you that Germany is just about the best place to live in Europe if you’re a young person looking for a job. According to official statistics, eight British youngsters out of every 100 struggle to get a job compared with five Germans
This is no accident. Germany has an apprenticeship system which caters for two-thirds of its young people. Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes, takes on 2,000 apprentices each year and that’s only a third of the German car industry’s annual intake.

Across the country, 90 per cent of these young people can expect to find a full-time job when they have served their time.

Germany clearly proves that apprenticeships work. That’s one of the reasons Tameside Council is so keen on promoting them. We also back apprenticeships because those who start their adult life on the dole are more likely to earn lower wages and endure more spells of unemployment later in life. That’s because they lose out on chances to acquire skills and self-confidence in their formative years.

In Tameside, we are committed to having a quarter of our young people in apprenticeships by 2015 and I’m proud to say that Tameside has already managed it with one in five, which makes us the best-performing authority in the North West.

We want to help smaller companies take on apprentices and We work closely with the National Apprenticeship Service, businesses, schools and colleges to increase the number of apprenticeships available and to promote them as a career path.

At the skills summit in March, my colleague Cllr Gerald Cooney, the executive member for learning, skills and economic growth, challenged delegates to make sure all Tameside’s 16 to 24-year-olds are in education, training or work by 2020.

For our part, we are offering incentives for companies to take on apprentices. Employers can get grants of up to £15,000 subject to conditions. Separately, there is £2,275 for employers taking on someone aged 18-24 who is unemployed and has been claiming benefit for 26 to 39 weeks.

If you’re a business, or someone about to leave school, I would strongly encourage you to think about apprenticeships. You can find full details at www.tameside.gov.uk/jobs/apprenticeships

Protecting the vulnerable

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

Last year 745 concerns were raised relating to adult abuse in Tameside and almost half of the investigations related to neglect . In 2 out of 5 cases the investigations related to adults living in their own homes.

That someone can be abused in their own home by someone they know is alarming and indeed sad. If an adult can’t be safe at home, where can they be safe?

Our Safeguarding Adults Team carries out the investigations and uppermost in their mind is the need to protect vulnerable people and ensure that our residents live their lives free from violence, harassment, humiliation and degradation.

Each year we draw attention these concerns with World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, which takes place on Saturday 15 June .

Tameside Adult Safeguarding Partnership takes a zero tolerance approach to adult abuse. It has been raising awareness of the issue all week with information sessions for the public helping to spot signs and symptoms of abuse.

Abuse can be experienced by the elderly or frail, disabled or ill adults who are ill-treated by carers or relatives. Any incidents reported are dealt with confidentially, investigated and action taken where appropriate.

If you wish to raise any concerns or for further information regarding Safeguarding Adults please visit tameside.gov.uk/socialcare/adultabuse

Prepared to Care? Get in touch

Monday, June 10th, 2013

Our residents who help the elderly, sick or disabled on a regular basis deserve huge respect for the selfless way they look after family and friends.

During this National Carers Week (10 – 16 June) we are asking Carers who need support to get in touch with us.

People who regularly help a friend or relative who is elderly, sick or disabled to wash, dress, eat, go to the toilet on an unpaid basis are undertaking the job of being a Carer. They are entitled to a free assessment of their needs by law, which our Carers Centre will do and then ensure they get all the help and support that’s out there.

Three in five people become a Carer at some point in their lives – often unexpectedly. This could mean that people may be struggling alone for a long time before they realise they can get help. This is an annual campaign and this year we’re focussing on helping people to know what to do should they ever find themselves caring for someone.

Our Carers Centre provides help, support and advice to 4,000 Carers across the borough but we know there are more Carers out there.

This campaign is called the ‘Prepared to Care’ campaign. Although few people choose to become a Carer, when someone you love falls ill or has an accident it’s the natural thing to provide support. If you are prepared to care, we want you to know that help and advice is available for this demanding and stressful role and you don’t need to struggle unnecessarily.

For more information visit www.tameside.gov.uk/carers or drop into the Carers Centre at 50 Warrington Street, Ashton or phone 0161 342 3344.

Royal status for Copperas Field

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

Queen Elizabeth II Field in Trust (Copperas Field) is a bit of a mouthful to say the least. However, no matter how unwieldy the term is, it means that Copperas Field is now safe for the people of Droylsden to enjoy for many years to come.

I was honoured to unveil the plaque which shows that Copperas Field has been granted special “royal” status as part of an initiative to mark last year’s Diamond Jubilee. In fact it is the only place in Tameside to have it.

The friends group who have worked so hard over the last 10 years to preserve the area for future generations deserve a great deal of praise. They can be justly proud of what they have achieved. My fellow Droylsden councillors and I have been happy to give them our help.

Copperas Field is the traditional green oasis – an inner-city lung. It’s a 16-acre site on the edge of Droylsden but right in the middle of urban east Manchester. Whatever changes lie ahead, the families who occupy the surrounding homes know they’ll always have a place to relax and play.

The fields were at their best at the recent fun day when hundreds gathered in the sunshine. There were all sorts of activities, from face-painting to fairground rides, and scouts to air cadets. As far as I could see everyone was having a thoroughly good time. That’s what the place is all about.

However, the work hasn’t ended with trust status. In fact, that marks the start of an entirely new phase. The friends group now wants to install a children’s playground, an adventure playground and an all-weather sports area, and the fun day helped to raise money for these projects.

I am a wholehearted believer in initiatives such as this. They show the public taking the lead over something about which they feel passionately. The friends group have achieved great things and they know they can always count on my support and that of my colleagues.

You can view a recording of the event by clicking on fun day 

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