Older Londoners suffering from lack of specialist careers advice

AMs are investigating the effectiveness of carers services in tackling unemployment

AMs are investigating the effectiveness of carers services in tackling unemployment

Unemployed men in their 50’s have less than an eight per cent chance of getting permanent, full-time work, the London Assembly heard this week.

As part of their investigation into the effectiveness of London’s careers services, Assembly Members have been hearing evidence from experts working in the sector.

Chris Walsh, Director of Wise Owls, told AMs that the over fifties accounted for over 60 per cent of public sector redundancies and that the proportion of older people classed as long-term unemployed is growing.

The Assembly’s Economy Committee also heard that the closure of programmes aimed specifically at older people is making it harder for them to access the specialist advice they needed to return to work.

Committee chair Andrew Dismore AM, said: “It’s a difficult time for anyone looking for a job, but we heard that London’s over fifties are really having a tough time of it.  The capital stands to benefit from their vast knowledge and many years of experience, but this does not appear to be happening at the moment.
 
“A comprehensive careers guidance service in London should help guide our jobseekers, whatever their age, and go some way to addressing unemployment and skills gaps.  We must make sure people are receiving high quality and relevant advice.”

The committee will hold a further meeting on the subject on Tuesday, 19 March 2013.