Croydon is one of 23 “co-operative” councils urging the government to devolve a scheme that gets local people back into work.
Calling for the government’s back-to-work programme to be devolved to a local level, the Co-operative Councils Innovation Network (CCIN) says that locally-led co-operative employment schemes are far more effective at getting people back into jobs.
It believes that granting powers locally would create more jobs and reduce the cost of employment programmes by up to 25% saving £500m.
Croydon already has its own programme geared at getting local people back into work, known as Pathways to Employment.
This is a partnership between the council and Jobcentre Plus, as well as several private sector companies and charities, which aims to create more than 16,000 jobs in Croydon over the next five years.
In its report “Unlocking Our Wealth”, the CCIN concluded that local co-operative approaches, such as Pathways to Employment, which are designed around local people’s needs, have a far greater chance of success than running schemes from Whitehall.
“This administration has been very vocal in calling on Whitehall to devolve powers to local government.
“The back-to-work programme is another example of where local authorities are better placed to implement such schemes.
“We are the ones on the ground who know what works for Croydon and how to get things done.
“This is why we are teaming up with other councils in this co-operative to ask government to devolve part of its back-to-work programme to a local level.”
Councillor Alison Butler, deputy leader and cabinet member for homes and regeneration
For more information about CCIN visit www.coopinnovation.co.uk