Employment Minister Willie Jackson. Photo: Daniel Hines/SunLive.
The Government’s latest employment strategy is said to be the driving force is making sure all New Zealander’s can achieve their potential by developing skills, finding secure employment and having fulfilling careers.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Employment Minister Willie Jackson released the strategy on Monday.
Jacinda says work is more than just how people support themselves and their families.
“It also provides a sense of purpose, a feeling of community and belonging, and the chance to use existing skills and develop new ones.
““We need a joined-up approach across education and training, the social welfare system and active labour market strategies to work with people to get them into the right kind of jobs. On all these fronts we have work underway.”
Jacinda says the work done with the Reform of Vocational Education or ROVE is to help make sure long term challenges of skill shortages are tackled, as well as the mismatch between training provided and the needs of employers.
“In our social welfare system we made a significant investment in the Wellbeing Budget for 263 extra frontline staff to help support more people into meaningful work.
“Now we add in the Employment Strategy to complement these efforts with its focus on better and more inclusive employment outcomes for all New Zealanders that also meet employers’ needs.”
The strategy will build a skilled workforce by ensuring the education, immigration, welfare systems all pull in the same direction to unlock people’s potential and enable businesses to get the skills they need, support industries and regions to thrive by ensuring they are well served by the skills and training system, and support workplaces to modernise by encouraging them to make the most of New Zealand’s increasingly diverse workforce.
It will also support workers and businesses to be resilient and adaptable in the face of the changing nature of work by making sure New Zealanders have good foundation skills and participate in lifelong learning, and support a more inclusive labour market to better enable people to grow their skills and careers and have decent and stable work.
The strategy will be overseen by Willie Jackson, and the Labour market ministers group.
Willie Jackson says the employment strategy will be delivered through six action plans, which are chosen to ensure those who consistently experience poor labour market outcomes have the support they need to find work.
The first action plan was released by the Government – the Youth Employment Action Plan – which supports young people through programmes such as He Poutama Rangatahi and Mana in Mahi, creating a long term employment pipeline.
“The Youth Employment Action Plan sets out how the Government will put young people onto a stronger pathway to reaching their fullest potential,” Willie says.
“We are supporting them to enhance their skills, kick-start their career prospects and earn a good living, as well as provide employers with the skilled, motivated talent they need.
“Supporting people at a young age is proven to make a lifelong difference in their careers and wellbeing and contributes to their identity and sense of purpose,” Willie says.
Other action plans will cover the elderly, Maori, Pacific people, refugees, new migrants and those with disabilities.
“We want every New Zealander, regardless of gender, age, where they live or the technology they have access too, to have the opportunity to have long dignified careers,” Willie says.
“This will help them, the businesses they work for, the economy and the overall wellbeing of New Zealanders as a whole.”