Gillian Martin, MSP for Aberdeenshire East, has urged the Scottish Government to consider allocating some of the £100m training and employment support announced on Thursday to be used to help North East workers.
Kate Forbes MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Finance, today announced that the Scottish Government would make the sum available this year for targeted employment support and training.
Fiona Hyslop MSP – Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Fair Work and Culture – will set out details of how the £100m will be used to Parliament soon.
Ms Martin has been campaigning for the Scottish Government to introduce a scheme similar to the Transition Training Fund to help the North East handle the challenges of a low oil price, the possibility of no-deal Brexit and the impact of the covid-19 pandemic.
The £12m TTF helped over 4000 workers to retrain following the 2016 oil crash, and the Aberdeenshire East MSP thinks it’s time for something similar.
Following Ms Forbes’ announcement, Ms Martin has written to Ms Hyslop requesting that a portion of the £100m pot be used to form a fund to aid workers to transition into the renewables and low carbon energy sectors.
Commenting, Gillian Martin MSP for Aberdeenshire East said
Kate Forbes’ announcement of £100m for targeted employment support and training is hugely welcome at a time of worrying uncertainty for the region.
Some of that money should be targeted at the North East, and I hope my colleagues in Government give a transition training fund serious consideration.
The City and Shire face a triple threat at the moment. We have a low oil price, we have a Tory government getting ever closer to the cliff edge of no trade deal with the EU, and we have this covid-19 pandemic that has caused a massive recession and that we must do everything we can to contain.
A fund to enable our workforce to channel their skills into a sustainable future could give people a route to a prosperous, secure future.