General Election Results 2017 - Sector Response
IEP Chairman Scott Parkin FIEP, said: “The election result certainly highlights a drive and passion amongst young people to stand up and be counted and, perhaps more importantly, to call for change. The new government has a responsibility to listen to these voters and take heed if they are to really learn lessons from the result. We are living in a changing world where no one really knows what is in store and what the future will bring but the election result is a reminder that we all have a voice and we have the power to use it.
"People are struggling, many people who are in work are also in poverty and many people who are working two or three jobs are finding it difficult to make ends meet. Whilst the government has a serious job to do in focusing on low pay and making sure work ‘works’ we in the employability sector have an important job to do in developing the skills of people to help them gain and progress in employment, this is especially relevant and pertinent to those new young voters. We also have a responsibility to support people to gain employment within environments that have favourable working conditions and that we support them to progress within their careers, at the same time improving UK PLC’s productivity. The services we provide as a sector are always necessary and highly valuable in creating a fair and thriving economy and the IEP will continue to promote the benefits of developing our Members so that the ‘Future Adviser’ is properly equipped to provide the high-quality support people deserve.
"We look forward to working with the new government to make these aims a reality and we welcome the opportunity to inform and influence the changes that are needed to support our vision; The IEP is dedicated to supporting the people who support others gain work, progress in work and retain work."
ERSA’s Chief Executive, Kirsty McHugh, said: “ERSA looks forward to working with the new government to ensure that we have a robust labour market that delivers for everyone. The election result points to the need for a much stronger domestic policy focus and the next government needs to focus urgently on welfare support, low pay, social mobility and opportunities for young people if it is to deliver a comprehensive Brexit deal that works across society. ERSA’s election ‘Minifesto’ points to some of the solutions that we believe should now be prioritised.
“ERSA believes that the new government should develop an agenda that demonstrates leadership on the great domestic issues of the day, underpinned by a welfare system that can deliver transformational impact by supporting communities across the country. At the heart of this will be setting in train planning for its proposed Shared Prosperity Fund while also ensuring we fully allocate all of the crucial 2014-2020 European Social Fund pot. Additionally, to solve the UK’s great productivity challenges, the government should establish an independent in-work progression service, while also ensuring that all jobseekers are guaranteed access to high quality specialist employment support. ERSA also believes that the new government should go one better than the Conservative’s manifesto and maintain its previous laudable commitment to halving the disability employment gap.
“The message from the electorate is clear: the government must refocus its activities, prioritising its domestic agenda. Only then will the government be able to secure a stronger post-Brexit Britain.”
David Hughes, Chief Executive of the Association of Colleges, said: “Last night’s election result has left us all in limbo. In the short term, the uncertainty and possible delays put even more pressure on some of the key operational decisions which DfE need to make very quickly.
“Throughout this short election campaign, our message has been simple. For the UK to succeed in a post-Brexit world, this country must be more self-sufficient in skills. Colleges are ready to make this a reality. We need to develop a culture of lifelong learning and make this the norm in all communities for all people. To achieve this, colleges need to have the right investment. We will continue to push this message to the next Government, however this is formed.
“We also have a very different dynamic in national politics and in Parliament. If we have a minority Conservative government or a coalition led by the conservatives then they will face a confident and more legitimate Labour opposition. Labour made gains on a platform which moves on considerably from the austerity focus of the last seven years. That will help us build the case for more post-16 investment.
“The strong turnout from young people is good news. Colleges across the country have worked hard to encourage voter registration as well as running hustings and debates. We live in a participatory democracy, and getting young people engaged is good for all of us.”
Stephen Evans, Learning and Work Institute, comments: "After the last few years, we perhaps shouldn't really be surprised by another unexpected election result. It is not yet clear what form the next government will take or whether a further election will be needed in the coming months or years. And with Brexit negotiations due to start in less than two weeks, it is not entirely helpful that we don't know who will be negotiating or for what.
"Nonetheless, the challenges we faced yesterday are still the challenges we face today. We need to secure a Brexit outcome that gets investment in people, skills and jobs: our #futureESF campaign continues. We need high quality technical and vocational education for prosperity and opportunity. And we need to invest in people so everyone has a fair chance in life.
"And of course, all current government policies remain in place at this time: we need to keep engaging young people and adults in learning, and employers in investing in skills. When a new government and ministers are appointed, we will be working to secure the priorities for investment in people we set out in our pre-election manifesto. The phrase that springs to mind is: keep calm and carry on."
A summary of the main manifestos is available here. The Prime Minister has carried out a cabinet reshuffle, with David Gauke, a former treasury minister, becoming the new Secretary of State for Work and Pensions. A full list of the cabinet can be found here