Companies in Humber are being called on to invest in skills training and apprenticeships for their workers and for new employees, as part of a new initiative to get more local unemployed people into work.

The Skills Pledge campaign is being spearheaded by the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), according to the Grimsby Telegraph, and has been launched with the aim of getting thousands of younger and unemployed people back into jobs and stimulating the economy.

Speaking at the launch event of the programme last month, the chairman of Hull Youth Enterprise Partnership, Blair Jacobs, said that they had a mission with a simple and clear aim.

“We want to boost the local economy through investment in skills and training,” he explained. “We want to get employers more involved and young people and adults must be given the chance.”

Businesses that sign up for the pledge will be given the choice of six ‘actions’ to take up, allowing them to tailor the pledge to the benefit of their business. The actions are mentoring a budding entrepreneur; offering an apprenticeship; employing a local graduate; offering a work placement; supporting the development of employability skills or increasing workforce skills.

The chairman of the Humber LEP, Lord Haskins, told the local enterprise representatives at the launch that the fostering of the local workforce is “by far the biggest issue for economic growth”.

“It is without a doubt that one of our biggest weaknesses is developing and training our own workforces,” he explained. “If we don't get that right, we won’t get the investment here. We have still got a very difficult economic situation. However, I do think we are making good progress.”