CAROLINE ANSELL MP: Youth employment, and Remembrance Sunday

I was delighted to be at The Eastbourne Academy this week and meeting Year 7 as part of the Eastbourne Youth Radio week. They asked very insightful questions and had an impressive focus on the future.

Thursday, 18th November 2021, 2:46 pm

On that, the Government’s focus on getting young people into work and onto the career ladder has seen more than 125 and rising Kickstart places in Eastbourne as the scheme to get 16-24-year-olds into work has been extended.

Every business and organisation I visit I encourage owners and managers to buy into the scheme, from Bonners to And Company, the developer at Moira House. I have met kickstarters at the railway station and at local charity Amaze. They are working at the DGH, in media and in schools and nurseries. Brilliant! With the deadline in December, there is still time for employers to apply. Please do, it is creating all important opportunities for young people in our town.

Kickstart stepping forward to help young people on Universal Credit get their work experience with the government picking up their salary and funding training too is a big plus and one I am proud the government has put in place. This is a good investment of taxpayers’ money and I am pleased so many local employers have joined the scheme.

The success is also down to the enthusiasm of the staff at our JobCentre Plus. I am really impressed with the work Bruce, Karra and the team are doing to help local people find work. I spent time with work coaches Victor and Harlen last week, both so passionate about supporting and mentoring their customers. Better still, I was there when one lovely lady came in to announce she had secured a new job on the seafront. I’ve just popped a ‘Congratulations’ in the post too.

Employment and career progression remains a top local challenge which is why the £19.8m just awarded to Eastbourne from the Government’s levelling up fund is so important. The massive expansion in the number of work coach numbers is another serious investment by the government for Eastbourne.

There was an emotional Remembrance Sunday parade in our town and I was honoured to attend and lay a wreath in memory of all those who have fought and died for our country during conflict in this century and the last.

This year is the 100th anniversary of the Royal British Legion – that standard bearer of help, support and succour for veterans and their families and a national institution. Our veterans, servicemen and cadets have my full support. So too, the Eastbourne branch of the RBL.

I also attended the service that took place at the Ruthless Memorial at Butts Brow on Sunday. It happens every year to honour the crew of an American Liberator bomber, Ruthless, which crashed on the downland during World War Two.

The crew of 10 men – far from their homes, died in 1944 when the aircraft crashed in low cloud following damage by enemy fire. Willingdon and Jevington Parish Council organise the service every year and it is humbling to see so many local people turnout to remember these young men.