MP Bob Seely is encouraging Isle of Wight businesses to sign up to a new government scheme which will create thousands of jobs for young people.

The new £2 billion Kickstart scheme will see young people on Universal Credit aged between 16-24 offered six-month work placements – with wages paid by the government.

The government has committed to fully fund each “Kickstart” job - paying 100% of the age-relevant National Minimum Wage, National Insurance and pension contributions for 25 hours a week. It has also pledged to assist employers with set up and training costs including the cost of uniforms. There is also the option for employers to top up this wage.

Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Therese Coffey, said: “As we launch our £2 billion Kickstart programme, putting young people at the heart of our revival - we are urging businesses to get involved in this innovative scheme and take advantage of the enormous pool of potential out there.

“There is no limit on the number of opportunities we’ll open up through Kickstart and we’ll fund each one for six months as part of Our Plan for Jobs to create, support and protect jobs.

“Young people taking part will receive on-the-job training, skills development and mentoring, as we get them on that first rung of the jobs ladder and on their way to successful careers.”

Mr Seely said: “I welcome this scheme which will help our young people onto the first step of the employment ladder, improving their future prospects and employability.

“I encourage Isle of Wight businesses to sign up to this scheme to give our young Islanders a fighting chance at a bright future.

“We cannot allow young people to be left behind as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, and schemes like this will be vital for creating jobs and giving young people the skills to access them.

“I’m delighted that the Conservative Government are putting young people are the heart of its plans to build back stronger after the pandemic and hope as many as possible on the Island can take part.”

Businesses of all sizes can apply and there is no cap on the number of places.

The scheme will initially be open until December 2021, with the option of being extended.

Young people will be referred into the new roles through their Jobcentre Plus work coach with the first Kickstarts expected to begin at the start of November.

Employers can find more information about the Kickstart scheme: