Examination of Witnesses (Questions 118-139)|
WEDNESDAY 8 MAY 2002
118. May we reconvene the formal Committee proceedings
and welcome a series of witnesses from three different organisations?
We have Mr Tony Hawkhead, who is Chief Executive of Groundwork.
He is accompanied by Mr Graham Parry, who is the Director of EnProve.
We are also joined by Mr Ian Charlesworth, who is the Managing
Director of the Shaw Trust and Mr Ian Reeves, Chairman of Tomorrow's
People accompanied by Ms Debbie Scott, who is the Trust Director.
You are all very welcome. May I invite you to say a little bit
for the record about what your organisations are and your unique
experience? One of the important parts of this inquiry is trying
to capture what the innovation is, what the new working is, what
the new messages which are being tried and established are. We
have been impressed by the evidence we have seen of the results
of each of your organisations, so it is important that as part
of the inquiry we capture some of that for the record as well
as see what recommendations we might be able to make to assist
you in developing the important work you have all been involved
in in your own ways.
(Mr Hawkhead) Groundwork has been around
for about 21 years; we celebrate our coming of age this year.
We have nearly 50 local trusts in England, Wales and Northern
Ireland; about 4,500 projects a year. The unique thing is that
each trust is a partnership with the local voluntary, public and
private sectors, each trust is independent although part of the
federation which I lead. We now have offshoots in the United States
of America; we have nine local trusts operating in the States
and we have a Japan Groundwork association. We have been involved
in jobs and training schemes from our origins, working with the
Community Programme back in 1981. We now specialise in ILMs, intermediate
labour market projects, which are extensions of the New Deal,
all built on the Environment Task Force element of New Deal.
(Mr Charlesworth) Shaw Trust is a not-for-profit
registered charity. We are the largest provider of employment
services for disabled people. We also deal with disadvantaged
groups. In terms of the New Deal for Disabled People, we are the
leading not-for-profit provider. We are currently running job
broking in Tyne and Wear, South Wales, parts of London and this
month we started in the North West and in Falkirk. We previously
ran two of the six private sector personnel adviser pilots which
were the forerunner of job broking in South Tyneside and Newham.
We were a partner with Outset SEMA Group North Yorkshire in three
of the other pilots. In terms of the job retention and rehabilitation
pilots, we have currently submitted bids as a preferred bidder
to South Wales, Teeside and Wiltshire. We operate job retention
schemes with European funding and funding from private sector
for Neath Borough Council and 3Ms nationally. In addition we have
been involved in the New Deal for Ethnic Minorities in Tower Hamlets
and the New Deal for Lone Parents in Newcastle and South Wales
and we partnered Reed as their specialist disability employment
advisers in Employment Zones and ONE. We have a £38 million
turnover with 580 staff. We contract and work with 64 local authorities
and health trusts. One of the things we are particularly proud
of is that we have eight social firms, two of which with no subsidy
are profit making and 20-plus social enterprises. In particular
we are proud of the Opening Doors schemes which we operate in
special education schools and the alternative curriculum which
we are currently operating for the whole of Lincolnshire. Finally,
we like to work in partnership and we have a range of partners
to work with wherever we are operating job broking or any other
service, Health Service, Social Services, the CVS,
specialist disability organisations such as Coalition for the
Disabled, RNIB, RNID, etcetera. We have recently started three
independent living schemes Direct Payments Agencies. We are trying
to build a model which is inclusive at every level.
119. That is very helpful. That sets the scene
rather well. Can we assume that you are all spending quite a lot
of time and creative energy finding resources from different bits
of the public purse? Would that be common to you all?
(Mr Hawkhead) Yes.
(Mr Charlesworth) Yes.
(Mr Reeves) Yes.
120. Let us take that as read in that case.
You are all protected by parliamentary privilege. Do you have
any particularly difficult experiences with any aspect of central
government, whether it is Jobcentre Plus or any of that, which
you are really burning to get off your chest, or is it just the
kind of constant constructive tension in trying to make the best
out of any situation that you find yourself in? Is your relationship
with central government or the policy makers in central government
exceptionable to the extent that you would want to say something
to us this morning about it?
(Mr Reeves) Two points, perhaps protected by being
a businessman and earning my living elsewhere, I can feel even
freer in the matter. There are two issues in my view. We bid for
Working Links and we could not make the numbers stack up. We bid
for one or two other things recently, or were prepared to and
did not because we could not make the numbers stack up. This is
not a gripe, it is a statement which I think is helpful. Please
let us check the accounting. Where we have the public and the
private sector bidding in partnership can we please have transparency
of costings, costings within the public sector and the private
sector. We think we are quite good at maths, but when we cannot
make it stack up and we ask our auditors to check that we have
not made mistakes and they tell us we have got our sums right,
something is wrong. That would be my first point. The second point
I would make is that I believe life is driven by fear and greed.
There is a lot of fear out there of people trying to protect their
positions. Money tends to go either to sustain what people started,
however well intentioned it was, or because they see it affecting
the direct employment of themselves or their friends. We must
guard against decisions being made for the wrong reasons, however
understandable they may be.
(Mr Charlesworth) My comment would be that we face
the sort of discrimination and prejudice against disabled people
that has existed over the last 50 years and is echoed in the Government's
approach to the New Deal in the way that it is being implemented
by civil servants. We have had a constant pilot session. Everything
is a pilot in terms of New Deal for Disabled People. When they
have the experience and they are shown what can work, they choose
to ignore that and start again to re-invent the wheel. This is
based on an argument which seems to go something like, it is not
really worth the investment because there are two kinds of people
with disabilities. There are those who were shifted off Jobseeker's
Allowance onto Incapacity Benefit some five to six years ago and
who could easily be got back to work. There are those who are
so severely disabled that they really cannot work so we should
not be spending money on them. Yet we have a group, 3.3 million,
and we estimate at least half of them want to work and could work.
The difficulty we find is the constant battle to get a message
over that makes economic sense as well as social sense to get
this group back to work. I have brought a paper
with me which I will leave which is still in draft from our research
manager, who is the Welsh Disability Rights Commissioner as well,
which shows the enormous savings to Government of the New Deal
for the Disabled and the Workstep programme. We commissioned some
research from Nottingham University with a grant which proved
just the same as well. We found that kind of prejudice against
investing is shown by the £195 million put into the New Deal
for Disabled People against the larger amounts for the other New
Deals. Finally, whilst the policy makers and the people who are
on the ground working with us to provide the service are committed
and understand what is needed, we have a contracting regime within
the Employment Service, Jobcentre Plus now, which seems to be
out of control and which seems to see an end in itself is appointing
the highest number of contractors at the cheapest price, even
though they cannot deliver the programme. We are constantly upset
by the fact that we are delivering the programme, we think we
know how to do it and yet a lot of contractors are appointed,
60-odd, who are not performing and are giving the Treasury ammunition
that they should not spend any money on disabled people.
(Mr Hawkhead) A slightly different thing.
We reckon that we have to use 10 programmes or more to fund our
employment schemes. At any one time, one of the people we employ
to deliver projects on the ground is spending 30 per cent or more
of their time simply filling in the forms that funders need. That
is bonkers. That is a generic problem across government that we
have to face and one of the reasons we argue that there needs
to be much more considered thought as to how you blend innovation
and mainstream together. As far as Jobcentre Plus is concernedand
it may be that I am dealing with a different bit, our relationship
with them has been extremely strong and we have found it one of
the most open and innovative thinking bits of government. There
are other bits I could be less complimentary about.
121. Judging from your opening remarks, collectively
you must cover all of the New Deals that the Government presently
offer. To what extent do you think the success of the New Deal
for Unemployed People has been accounted for by the UK's strong
economic force? Do you see fairly major implications if there
is an economic downturn on the delivery of the Government's New
(Ms Scott) I should like to start by saying that there
is no doubt the New Deal has really focused individuals on the
job search and getting them back to work. The one-to-one approach
has really made a difference. If there were to be an economic
downturn, then those people most disadvantaged and distanced from
the labour market would have to compete with people who were perhaps
in a better condition. Therefore one of our recommendations would
be that support available to that group of people was actually
enhanced and encouraged and grown. Simultaneously with that, we
would urge Government to focus more on employers and get employers
engaged in the process sooner rather than later.
(Mr Charlesworth) My evidence on that point would
be that we have no evidence that the strength of the economy is
particularly helpful in terms of the Government's approach on
New Deal. We have operated in South Tyneside and Newham, which
have two of the highest unemployment rates in the country, but
we had the highest success in terms of placements into jobs of
any of the 12 pilots, so there was not really a correlation between
the labour market and our success. It was more the approach which
the New Deal allows, with the personal adviser focused on a client-centred
approach allied to a job matching system. We have had one other
aid in our workwhich I did not mention in my opening remarksthat
we operate Workstep and we have 2,300 employees in companies up
and down the country. We deal with 2,000 companies every week.
We have had no difficulty in finding jobs for people with disabilities.
The big problem is getting in contact with groups who have been
"written off" by social services, the Health Service
and the Employment Service and are not in contact generally with
statutory services concerned with employment.
122. Essentially you are saying that even in
times of economic recession there are plenty of jobs that disabled
people can do provided they are given the correct support and
engagement with employers.
(Mr Charlesworth) Yes, I believe that is true.
(Mr Parry) The same is true for our client group which
is deemed to be the hardest to help in the New Deal for Young
People programme. It is the strength of the programme and the
quality of the programme that makes the difference, possibly not
the economic background. We have continued to perform at a steady
rate over the last few years in an economy, for example in North
Nottinghamshire, which has not benefited quite so much from the
economic upturn across the rest of the UK. Our outputs have been
maintained because we are working with those people who are hardest
to help, but bringing them to the same equal opportunities as
those people who are perhaps recent job leavers, recent school
leavers with more qualifications and higher levels of ability.
It is the quality of the programme, not just the economic background.
123. Based on your experience, we know that
there has been some difficulty in getting sustainable jobs for
people who are coming through New Deal. Twenty-five per cent return
to benefit within three months, 40 per cent within six months.
Can more be done to improve the sustainability of jobs in New
Deal? Is it the quality of the job? Is it the aftercare service
between employees and employers once a person starts a job?
(Ms Scott) You have hit on a very important point
and that is the aftercare service. Getting somebody into work
is one job, but keeping them there is another thing. One of the
things Tomorrow's People has developed is an aftercare service
where we keep in contact with both the employer and the unemployed
person. You cannot separate the care you give them both because
it is a tripartite arrangement to keep them in work. We should
never underestimate the challenge for somebody who has been distanced
from the labour market and gone into work. Once they have got
the job, they have achieved a great thing, but they face another
set of challenges in terms of being at work and staying in work.
By that I mean that they may have had their benefit paid on a
regular basis and they may have got used to the financial structure
of their life, but suddenly for the first time they go to work
and they are going to get paid monthly and they may not be able
to manage that. It may take up so much of their time that they
cease to focus on their work and not have anybody to speak to
about that. If you are long-term unemployed, without being in
any way disrespectful to people, you will not have an extensive
wardrobe and it can be a great pressure on people when they go
to work to think about how they could present themselves on an
ongoing basis. The aftercare service has to be very practical
and has to be in a position to deal with some of these issues
in order that people feel comfortable, having got the job, about
keeping it. The more work we can do with employers to help them
understand this, so that they do not just write people off because
in the first couple of months they do not show for work for whatever
reason, the more you can do about that, the more you can get them
involved, the better. We have proved that in our aftercare service
and retention rates and feedback from employers.
124. Is it the same for disabled people? I have
a vague memory of seeing figures somewhere where the difficulty
for disabled people is getting into a job, but they are actually
more stable once they are into work than the general population.
I do not know whether that is true.
(Mr Charlesworth) That is true. So far in terms of
those we put into work last year through the New Deal for Disabled
People, we have a 78 per cent success rate in terms of sustainability.
One of the factors in that in my opinion is that we quite often
use the Work Preparation Scheme as an introduction, no risk, safe
bet for both the employer and the disabled person. We put them
in under Work Preparation, which we run in these areas, for up
to eight weeks. The employer gets to know the person coming to
him and the disabled person gets to know whether they can cope
with work, which is the major issue for them. The other thing
is that we have found if you get over the first three weeks in
work, it is likely to be sustained. Those who leave generally
leave within the first three weeks because they cannot cope or
whatever. We are very keen to put job coaches or mentors or buddies
into the scheme when somebody starts work in order to try to sustain
them. The other thing is that we have an ongoing relationship
with a lot of the companies which has been built up through working
with them on Workstep. In dealing with employers generally we
know how to build up the right kind of approach for the employer
to come back to us should there be any problem and that is what
tends to happen. They will do that more than they will perhaps
with other groups which might be coming through on New Deal. Quite
often when I go round employers I hear them saying that it is
a lot better dealing with us than it is with the other New Deals
where nobody seems to care. That is not a judgement; I am passing
on the opinion of employers.
125. Do you have anything different to add?
(Mr Hawkhead) Two things. One is on the sustainability
of the New Deal scheme. Are people going to go through it and
get onto something valuable or are they going to waste money and
time on a "revolving door" outcome. Second, once people
leave New Deal, do they find themselves in a sustainable job which
actually lasts? Our argument is that New Deal has worked for the
majority of people, but it is less effective at dealing with the
hardest to help. That is when you need to provide sustainable
help and in our case in actually providing a temporary job. The
second thing we would argue is that whilst there are vast areas
of the country where there is now a buoyant job marketyou
mentioned London but our schemes in Manchester and Birmingham
have shown that and you need close connections to the employers,
like our Transco schemethere are also parts of the country
where we are working where there is not really the level of private
sector opportunities there are elsewhere. You have to think about
connections to alternative jobs. That is why we have been doing
a lot of work on green enterprise and innovative schemes for the
future, creating the opportunities for jobs as well as the opportunities
(Mr Parry) I would emphasise the importance of follow-up.
We find two of the most key issues for follow-up are training
resources for the employer and mentoring for the participant.
The other difference which helps retention is the intermediate
labour markets that we run are a job from day one for the participants.
Right from day one of joining us, we are dealing with the issues
which might later on affect job retention with a further employer.
Many of those issues are dealt with and ironed out while on our
programme and will not raise themselves as issues when the person
moves into a sustainable and unsubsidised work.
126. You are not saying that intermediate labour
markets are primarily or exclusively effective in areas where
there is not a potential private/public labour market.
(Mr Hawkhead) No. What we are arguing is that they
are primarily useful where you have large cadres of people who
are very difficult to help. We would not recommend investing in
intermediate labour markets where people would find it relatively
easy to get back into the labour market.
127. Fine; I am very happy with that. I think
it is extremely important that if you look for example at areas
such as where you are working in London, there is clearly a supply
of jobs, but there is a separate issue about the match. It is
important that intermediate labour markets are not seen as being
only useful where there is no vacancy.
(Mr Hawkhead) I would agree with you. We would actually
argue that the gap may well be larger there. If you are unemployed
in London, you are likely to be very, very hard to help at the
128. Are there any geographical factors which
explain the success or otherwise of the New Deal programmes? It
has not been universal. Which of you has most experience in that?
(Mr Charlesworth) I would say no, there are no geographical
factors. In terms of the New Deal for Disabled People it is more
to do with the contracting regime and the people who have been
appointed who have no experience and no ability to provide the
129. Would you all agree with that? It is the
quality of the people providing rather than anything geographical?
(Mr Parry) No. A factor is most definitely the availability
of jobs as well. You need the quality of the programme and the
availability of work.
130. What about the poor performance of people
from ethnic minorities who seem to be doing particularly badly
in New Deal? Are any of you addressing the issues with regard
(Ms Scott) In our `Getting London Working' programme
we managed to access 64 per cent of our client group from ethnic
minority groups. The way in which we have done that is to go out
on an outreach basis and find them and talk to them in an environment
where they feel comfortable and where they feel somebody is championing
their cause and their difficulties. You can get to them.
(Mr Reeves) It is very important to be proactive,
not to sit and wait for people to come to you. I come back to
my fear mechanism again. These people are really not comfortable
about coming in. We have gone into mosques, doctors surgeries,
police stations, all sorts of places and found the people who
need the help and given it to them where they are comfortable
to have it. That is one of the reasons we have this 85 per cent
after 12 months. I think it is unmatched by other programmes.
May I make one other point? I was Chairman of the London Region
CBI when the report Help Beyond Charity was written. In London
in particular there is an under-estimation of the importance of
transportation on unemployment. There are opportunities in one
place and people in another. The inability of these people to
motivate themselves out of an area into another area needs to
be addressed. We could take up half an hour on that subject alone
but it is a structural issue.
131. In fact one of my next questions was that
we heard evidence last week about the mental blocks that people
evolve which mean that they will not move out of an area or they
will not get a job in an unfamiliar field. How do you work with
people to overcome these barriers? How do you solve that?
(Ms Scott) You work with them on a one-to-one basis.
If the luxury is there, it has to be un-timebound. You really
have to understand what it is that is really stopping them from
entering the labour market.
132. We also heard last week about the "network
effects"how you perceive yourself and your potential
is dependent on the people around you. How do you help them break
out of those networks? How do you make sure that they think they
can actually do it?
(Ms Scott) The great thing is that you do not send
somebody to a network or tell them to go and talk to that person,
you take them.
(Mr Charlesworth) I would still argue that we have
no evidence that the ability to get disabled people into work
is affected by job supply.
133. It is psychological.
(Mr Charlesworth) Yes. I was not with the Trust, but
I am told that some 20 years ago when unemployment was at its
height, the Trust found that was the easiest time to get disabled
people into work. That is anecdotal evidence. I do not have direct
experience. What I would say in terms of getting to people is
that is the difference with the New Deal for Disabled People:
it is purely voluntary. It is not like the other New Deals. You
have to adopt a different approach, you have to work with partners
who are involved with local communities, whether it is ethnic
minority groups or whether it is any other group. That is what
we have done. Wherever we are working we have at least 20 partners.
I accept the point that was made earlier about collaboration and
partnership, but what we would say is that it is a true partnership
with cross-referral. If somebody comes to us with an employment
need but needs aids and adaptations or is interested in independent
living, the appropriate reference would be made and certainly
from the other agencies. Creating the network to bring people
in is vital in terms of working within New Deal for Disabled People.
That has not truly been understood by Jobcentre Plus.
(Mr Parry) That is another advantage of the intermediate
labour market process. From day one the participants on the programme
are our employees. We will actively work with those people to
get them into working in different areas, we will move people
around and as there are employers encourage them to see new areas
and different pieces of work. That is especially prevalent in
North Nottinghamshire, only 12 miles away from the booming economy
in Nottingham itself and getting people to move from coalfield
villages to work in the city is something we actively encourage.
134. My next set of questions was on the New
Deal for Disabled People and Mr Charlesworth has actually given
us quite an insight into where you think the Government are going
wrong in not taking it as seriously as they could. If you had
two pieces of advice to give to the Government about getting more
disabled people into the job market, what is it you think they
should be doing?
(Mr Charlesworth) It should be investing more money
to enable me to reach more people who want to work and to open
up the doors for them. Secondly, they need to look at the tax
credit system which at the moment, in terms of disabled people,
is too low. It is not high enough and the tax credits need reviewing.
135. Do you genuinely believe that if you get
that right, there is a huge pool of talent sitting out there in
the disabled community?
(Mr Charlesworth) Absolutely. We are bedevilled by
the fact that there is no disaggregation of costs. Nobody knows
how much it costs to keep a disabled person out of work, some
of the care costs, which are never taken into account by the Treasuryor
do not seem to bewhen looking at this factor: residential
care costing up to £1,700 a week, day care £11,000 per
annum per individual. These are huge costs and it is such a waste,
because the individual does not want to do that. They want to
work in our experience. If you go to any day centre, many of the
people will want to work and can be enabled to work.
136. My final question is on the funding mechanisms.
You are all working in the area of the hardest to place, those
furthest from the job market. I have had one provider working
in the area of people with mental health problems complaining
that all the funding is end loaded, it is results driven and because
you have to spend a lot more time to get people job ready in all
of the areas you are working in, there are disincentives there,
there is a barrier. Can I ask for your comments on that and solutions
(Mr Reeves) First of all you should measure distance
travelled. This was a conversation we had with Leigh Lewis a long
time ago. Some mechanisms to manage value added along the chain
is critically important to get money to this sector. The other
thing you must do is find better ways of engaging people like
me from the private sector. There is a perception in business
that unemployed means unemployable. There is an ignorance factor
in business. There is an arrogance in business. There is a need
to get to more employers and get them to understand the economic
business case and the benefit and the high retention levels. The
reason I am involved with this is that I passionately believe
in it and I have seen it work, but not enough business people
are involved. Some effort and some investment needs to go in to
reaching outin the same way that we reach out to individuals
who need helpfind better ways of reaching out to business
to engage them in the process because there are still too many
businesses who think it is clever to walk away from the problem.
(Mr Charlesworth) In terms of the New Deal for Disabled
People, too much risk is loaded onto the service provider. It
is amazing again that the people who face the most barriers to
getting back to work and the service providers to that group also
face the highest risk, with 99 per cent outcome funding and no
payment up front. This has been altered in terms of all the other
programmes. New Deal for 50-plus, delivered by Jobcentre Plus
has no outcome funding. We are not arguing for that, but we are
arguing for a more equitable share of risk and much more recognition
that there are start-up costs, set-up costs and those should be
met in the first place.
(Mr Hawkhead) We should recognise that the Employment
Service, now Jobcentre Plus, listened in New Deal's early days
and did change the scheme to allow us to get more upfront support.
I totally agree with Ian: we need to do a lot more in terms of
recognising outcomes. What I am slightly worried about at the
moment and we are worried about generally is that there are signs
that New Deal funding is heading back towards "end loading".
If that happens, then the hardest to help will be the first to
fall off the trolley.
137. Employment and regeneration. Since so much
of the Government's employment strategy is also linked to regeneration,
can you tell me to what extent your own employment initiatives
are linked to regeneration programmes in particular areas?
(Mr Hawkhead) You have probably guessed from the fact
that I speak regularly to nine different Government Departments
and their Ministers that we are heavily involved in a range of
regeneration initiatives. Very heavily, is the answer. Indeed
our intermediate labour market scheme depends absolutely on regeneration
scheme funding such as single regeneration budget, in future single
pot funding. Where we would have a critical view is that we do
not think there are clear links and a clear understanding of the
Government's regeneration aims and its aims at reducing unemployment.
To give you one example, it is fair to say that the environment
task force has never really been a strongly focused bit of that
scheme. It has been very much more about unemployment than about
regeneration which it could be.
(Mr Charlesworth) In terms of regeneration, we are
the accountable body for SRB in two areas and use a fair amount
of SRB funding. I have to say it is a very difficult programme
to operate in terms of the bureaucracy, which is outstanding.
In terms of other programmes, we draw in from a range in the public
and New Deal in Communities and so on. Wherever we are operating
we try to use a co-ordinated measure of funding. I have to say
that co-ordinating the funding that is there for economic regeneration
and employment is difficult sometimes because disability does
not seem to be an issue nor employment of disabled people. Take
the Coalfields Regeneration Trust with whom we work, who have
found it very difficult to accept that disabled people should
be a priority. Even more amazing is that the Social Exclusion
Unit does not actually believe that the fact that one in two disabled
people are economically inactive is a form of social exclusion
and will not accept it. That tends to permeate government agencies
in their view of disability, even down as far as the Community
(Ms Scott) In terms of regeneration,
we as an organisation have had to be quite disciplined and stick
to our strengths. Therefore when we have become involved in regeneration
partnerships or initiatives we have played the role of helping
local people into local jobs and we have not put ourselves in
a position where we have developed capital projects.
138. Ian Charlesworth had some concerns about
the co-ordination between Government Departments. Do you share
his concerns about lack of co-ordination, both between Government
Departments and also between departments of local government and
(Ms Scott) I do share his view and I understand it
is very frustrating. You can have an initiative you want to deliver
and the cocktail is extensive in order to get the funding to do
it. You have to negotiate with probably three or four different
people whose funding timescale is completely different to the
next partner. One position we have at the moment is that we have
50 per cent of the funding from a regeneration initiative: the
other 50 per cent might not come through for four months and we
have to lay people off. It is terribly, practically difficult.
Anything that can be done to streamline it and make it more together
would be much better.
139. Do Groundwork have similar problems?
(Mr Hawkhead) We do. It is extremely difficult to
have joined-up government when life is so complicated. There is
quite strong evidence that there is a lack of a joined-up approach.
Looking to the future, to give you one example which would be
worth tracking, this week on Tuesday the report of the Urban Green
Spaces Task Force was issued. That is proposing £100 million
a year of new investment into urban green spaces. It would be
wonderful to imagine that someone somewhere in Government is saying
"Ah-ha, let's link that to the Environment Task Force. Let's
make sure we link the two and get double value". I doubt
whether that is happening. Perhaps after today.
2 COUNCILS FOR VOLUNTARY SERVICES. Back
Citizens Advice Bureaux.
(Mr Reeves) I am Chairman of
Tomorrow's People. Tomorrow's People owes its existence interestingly
to the private sector. In 1981 the Directors of Grand Met, as
it was then, took the view after the Toxteth riots that they should
stop saying "Somebody should do something about this"
and took the view that business had a role to play, which 19 years
ago seemed an original thought. They decided that employment was
the area where employers could make the most impact and set up
Grand Met Trust. It has gone from strength to strength. Since
1984 when it was actually fully fledged we have helped something
in excess of 350,000 people into further education or employment.
We are a nationally based organisation operating from Plymouth
to Glasgow and from Brighton to Liverpool. We have a very strong
presence here in London where we are delivering the Getting London
Working model, which is financed essentially through the SRB<fu3>3,
but also European funding. We are very business led. We are very
much run as a not-for-dividend organisation. We are interested
in surpluses, because I agree with the previous witness, only
by that can you have some corporate sustainability and re-investment.
Yes, we engage with partners. I should like to put it to the Committee
that there is a great deal of difference between partnership,
which in my view as a businessman is shared risk and reward, and
collaboration. The word "partnership" is too loosely
used in many of these areas. There is a vast degree of collaboration
and not a great deal of partnership. The work we do is reinforcing
some of the previous witness's comments but because of the limited
time I do not wish to repeat points which have already been made.
We are a major organisation. We have substantial backing to date
from Diageo-Grand Met merged with Guinness to form Diageo-BT and
other major employers. The answer has to be, in our experience,
that you engage with employers and encourage employers to become
involved in this process. There is a business case; we try to
make the business case. I believe help with making that business
case would affect the change enormously. There are leaders with
the vision of Lord Sheppard who was at the heart of this when
it started, who saw that a healthy back street meant a healthy
high street. He had the vision to see that this was an investment
not a cost.
3 Single Regeneration
Please refer to supplementary memorandum (ES 14A) submitted by
the Shaw Trust, Ev 66. Back
Health Action Zones. Back