From the TUC

Cuts Watch #192: More Connexions Cuts

11 Aug 2010, by in Cuts Watch

The list of Connexions services hit by cuts grows ever longer, with Cheshire and Warrington Connexions facing a £500,000 cut that is likely to affect services for vulnerable groups, such as teenage parents; 75 jobs are threatened. At Brighton, 19 Connexions staff have been issued with redundancy notices and other youth services may also be threatened. Bath and North East Somerset council is cutting £50,000 from Connexions, which will now only support the “most vulnerable.” The BBC has reported on cuts in Norwich, Northumberland, Sheffield, Sutton and Bolton; the Guardian adds Doncaster and the Times Educational Supplement Greater Merseyside.

6 Responses to Cuts Watch #192: More Connexions Cuts

  1. Terry Miles
    Aug 11th 2010, 8:30 am

    This is madness. Government policy is to provide an all-age careers advice service. Proposals are supposed to be coming out in the next few months. In the meantime hundreds of qualified and experienced professional careers advisers up and down the country are being made redundant in chaotic in-year cuts that will leave no Connexions in some areas and and a much reduced service in others. All hacked to pieces without any thought to any national policy objectives and sometimes by local councillors too lazy to consider trimming other budgets to spread the pain. Thousands of young people will be left without information, impartial advice and the challenging professional guidance they need to avoid the poor career and personal decisions that cost them, the economy and society so much.
    I can’t understand why someone in government doesn’t just call a halt to these precipitate cuts and say “hang on until we’ve got a plan!” but there again maybe they have…

  2. Tweets that mention Cuts Watch #192: More Connexions Cuts | ToUChstone blog: A public policy blog from the TUC — Topsy.com
    Aug 11th 2010, 4:19 pm

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by ToUChstone blog, L DTUC. L DTUC said: RT @touchstoneblog: Cuts Watch #192: More Connexions Cuts http://bit.ly/9hTldo […]

  3. Children and families face around £13 billion of spending cuts | ToUChstone blog: A public policy blog from the TUC
    Aug 17th 2010, 11:06 am

    […] Connexion services have been hit hard; a survey of Connexions services reveals more than one in 10 face budget cuts of up to 50 percent, with one in seven stating they are suffering reductions of £2m or more. Paul Chubb, director of Careers England says “you cannot, under any circumstances, describe cuts of this magnitude as efficiency savings. What we are seeing is the decimation of a universal public service for young people.” Steve Stewart, chief executive of Connexions Coventry and Warwickshire said “the chancellor said he was cutting £6.2bn of ‘waste…… Now we’re beginning to find out – it is in frontline services.” […]

  4. Why Young People need Connexions | ToUChstone blog: A public policy blog from the TUC
    Aug 18th 2010, 12:02 pm

    […] have reported how the cut in the central government grant to local authorities, combined with the abolition of a […]

  5. dorkinglad
    Aug 24th 2010, 12:38 pm

    The original model for the Connexions Service was ill concieved. It was intended to provide resources to help young people who were percieved as vulnerable and likely to be not in education, employment or training. The statistics suggest that it has been successful in this aim with more young people than ever engaged in education, employment and training. If the government had left this as the goal Connexions would be rgarded as a success.

    The mistake that weighed the service down was to incorporate a universal careers service into Connexions. It has meant that the quality of careers advice training has been inadequate. A young person needing advice on courses and employment may not get the advice they need. There appear to be many ‘old style’ careers advisers (now called personal advisers) who have just felt uncomfortable with the social inclusion agenda of Connexions.
    They have undermined Connexions effectiveness but in their defence were put in a difficult position not of their making.

    I don’t agree with the comment that Connexions staff work less hard than when the old careers services existed. In fact the ceir contracts often demand longer hours for less money and poorer terms and conditions. Most of the contracts are run by companies often charities that have to operate to stringent targets. These organisations are not ideal fits to run these services and only exist because a previous Tory Government had an obsession with bringing the private sector on board to run services. This has clearly not worked under present arrangements.

    An all age Guidance Service which is the coalitions’s preferred option is being suggested but as it would most likely be run by the same people that have run the Connexions Services with the same vested interests. An alternative is to fund institutions directly so they can employ careers advisers and use local authorities to provide the social inclusion part of Connexions that has been a success . The private sector companies who have run the contracts to make money should be cut out as having been ineffective.

  6. dorkinglad
    Aug 24th 2010, 12:41 pm

    The original model for the Connexions Service was ill concieved. It was intended to provide resources to help young people who were percieved as vulnerable and likely to be not in education, employment or training. The statistics suggest that it has been successful in this aim with more young people than ever engaged in education, employment and training. If the government had left this as the goal Connexions would be rgarded as a success.

    The mistake that weighed the service down was to incorporate a universal careers service into Connexions. It has meant that the quality of careers advice training has been inadequate. A young person needing advice on courses and employment may not get the advice they need. There appear to be many ‘old style’ careers advisers (now called personal advisers) who have just felt uncomfortable with the social inclusion agenda of Connexions.
    They have undermined Connexions effectiveness but in their defence were put in a difficult position not of their making.

    I don’t agree with the comment that Connexions staff work less hard than when the old careers services existed. In fact the their contracts often demand longer hours for less money and poorer terms and conditions. Most of the contracts are run by companies often charities that have to operate to stringent targets. These organisations are not ideal fits to run these services and only exist because a previous Tory Government had an obsession with bringing the private sector on board to run services. This has clearly not worked under present arrangements.

    An all age Guidance Service which is the coalitions’s preferred option is being suggested but it would most likely be run by the same people that have run the Connexions Services with the same vested interests. An alternative is to fund institutions directly so they can employ careers advisers and use local authorities to provide the social inclusion part of Connexions that has been a success . The private sector companies who have run the contracts to make money should be cut out as having been ineffective.