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Will the Olympics get London working?

Will the Olympics get London working?

Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, has said that more than 2,000 people have gained a job or been taken on as an apprentice as a direct result of a jobs and skills drive throughout the GLA.

Between April last year and March this, over 1,100 people joined apprenticeship schemes operated by the Greater London Authority Group and its contractors. Mr Johnson is now well on the way to meeting his own target of creating 3,000 apprenticeships by next year.

The Mayor has also secured jobs for more than 1,000 out of work individuals in the past year by requiring suppliers to the GLA to provide job and training opportunities as a condition of obtaining a contract.

Johnson’s programme uses public sector procurement to combat unemployment and is the first one to do so in the UK. The GLA has been talking to the government and large organisations to encourage more regions to take up this approach.

The London Organising Committee for the Olympics has now adopted the scheme, as have the Olympic Delivery Authority and Crossrail.

Meanwhile, construction firms working on Olympic projects have been warned that HMRC will crack down on any breaches of National Insurance, tax or national minimum wage regulations.

The Director General of enforcement and compliance at the Revenue, Mike Eland, said HMRC wants to help employers and contractors understand their obligations but it will also deal with people who break the law deliberately. The Olympics are a great opportunity for British companies but they must comply with employment and tax obligations.

He went on to reassure honest businesses that they have nothing to be concerned about but said that deliberate tax evaders would be tracked down and liable to criminal prosecution.

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Image: It’s not easy being green by Daveybot

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