Willie Jackson eager to fund training plans for rangatahi

By Bronson Perich

Employment Minister Willie Jackson says the government wants to fund entities who will train young people and help them get into work.

“If you’re interested in your young people, if you’ve got a plan, if you want to work with them, then come forward and I’ll work with you," Willie Jackson says.

“Our people will work with you.”

Plans, rather than dollars is what the government is interested in. How rangatahi will be supported through their training and put into work, is Minister Jackson's priority.

“We don’t need our groups fronting up with pūtea. If they want to provide some or partner up with anyone, then we’re open to that proposal,” Minister Jackson says.

“I want to know how they’re going to provide pastoral care to some of these rangatahi.”

Jackson hopes to get these entities up and training rangatahi in the next two months.

“I don’t want it all held up by bureaucracy as has been the case," Jackson says.

“You get these sort of kaupapa out, you get the pūtea, then all of a sudden you’re waiting six to eight months”

The employment minister confirmed he is negotiating some contracts with iwi and community groups. For that reason he is unwilling to reveal which groups have received funding and contracts. 

"The Crown will provide all the funding, the resourcing, anything else that they might need."

Jackson says his government has a track record of success at getting taiohi (youth) into work. He invites doubters to look into that track record as assurance that his government can deliver.