Election 2021

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Chamber and committees

Question ref. S5W-35595
Asked by: James Kelly, Glasgow, Scottish Labour
Date lodged: 1 March 2021

Question

To ask the Scottish Government how it will support the recovery of deprived areas from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Current status: Answered by Kate Forbes on 11 March 2021


Answer

Fairness is at the heart of the Scottish Governments approach to the recovery from Covid-19. The impact on our economy and labour market has been significant and we are committed to work towards a better future for our communities and businesses. We must ensure that Scotland’s economy continues to attract investment and that we continue to nurture talent and opportunity for all including access to Fair Work.

Since March 2020 we have committed more than £1.2bn to support economic recovery. This is helping us build a stronger, more resilient and sustainable economy with a focus on creating new, high quality, green jobs. This includes support to protect people and communities impacted by Covid-19 and provided assistance to local authorities in consequential funding incorporating:

  • £40 million of flexible funding for local authorities to tackle financial insecurity.
  • £30 million to support people impacted by Covid-19 restrictions and guidance, helping ensure access to essentials like food and medicine.
  • A Community and Third Sector Recovery Programme, now backed by £40 million, supporting our third sector to continue to support people and communities in responding to the ongoing impact of the pandemic.

We know that employability support is pivotal in ensuring Scotland’s economic recovery - providing support to those most at risk to the adverse economic, health and social impacts of the Covid-19 crisis and delivering on our ambitions for Scotland to flourish through increased wellbeing and sustainable and inclusive economic growth. We recognise that existing inequalities in the Labour Market may be exacerbated by Covid-19 and have committed a further £125m in 2021-22 to: support delivery of the Young Persons Guarantee, ensuring every 16-24 year old has the opportunity of work, education or training, giving them the chance to succeed despite the economic impacts of Covid-19; measures to recruit and retain apprentices, helping modern and graduate apprentices who are facing redundancy as a result of Covid-19 get back into work; the National Transition Training Fund to fund skills training to allow redundant workers or those seeking to retrain and develop skills in new or emerging sectors to access funding and courses; and, £20m to provide all-age support to individuals facing long-term unemployment.