Tom Wilson, unionlearn director, has written for the TUC's Touchstone blog about the government's new apprentices levy policy. In Apprentices levy: government skills policy paradigm shift, Tom Wilson writes:
The Levy will make all large employers pay something, perhaps half a percent of the cost of their payroll. Over half of all large employers don’t have any apprentices. They will now have to pay their way. The levy is a way of making every large employer share the cost equally.
Tom argues that this is good news for unions:
The TUC has argued for a levy ever since such collective measures were largely abolished by Mrs Thatcher. If employers simply won’t pay, despite all the incentives and exhortations, then the state must step in. Even a free market Conservative government must react to such evidence of market failure.
He also points out that the big worry is quality:
We need to ensure that the new hypothecated pot of apprenticeship money does not become a magnet for those aiming make money by hitting the 3million target for apprenticeships as quickly and cheaply as possible. Some providers may be tempted to devise deals, showing employers how to avoid the levy at least cost.
Read the whole blog on the Touchstone site: Apprentices levy: government skills policy paradigm shift