Since the recent introduction of a new programme designed to match jobseekers with short-term employment opportunities, hundreds of residents have expressed an interest in participating and some have since found employment, Premier Dr. Natalio “Sowande” Wheatley told the House of Assembly on Jan. 26.
A total of 418 people have registered with the Registration Apprenticeship Training Employment and Development (RATED) Programme, according to the premier.
Of those, 337 sought work in landscaping and field work, and 79 expressed interest in administrative work, he said. A dozen applicants did not qualify.
So far, 76 of the registrants have been placed with temporary assignments, Dr. Wheatley said.
That includes 59 in landscaping and bush cutting, six in administration, five in construction, five in trucking, and one in sanitation.
He noted that assignments and employers’ requests are filled on a first-come-first-served basis “to guard against favouritism and to ensure fairness in the access to opportunities of the programme.”
Dr. Wheatley encouraged anyone interested to apply, explaining that the list of opportunities will continue on a rotation.
“I must emphasise that this programme covers a very wide range of job types, not just those mentioned above,” he said. “The programme applies to other areas where there is a need for personnel, such as in office work, data entry, digitising records, plumbing and electrical work and so forth.”
The government is also partnering with H. Lavity Stoutt Community College to provide job training, and Dr. Wheatley said the first course in electrical work is about to start. Residents can get more information about registration through the Premier’s Office, he added.
Dr. Wheatley shared his hope that the recent initiatives will be just the beginning of a larger effort.
“It is important for prospective employers to tell the government what their needs are and for jobseekers to tell us what kinds of jobs they want and what kind of support they need to access these jobs, so that this information can be taken into consideration as we continue to grow the programme and to implement further phases,” he said.