UNISON Reps in Liverpool explore National Retraining Scheme programme

UNISON Reps with the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority have been amongst the first workers in the country to see the new national retraining scheme.

National Retraining Scheme in Liverpool
(L-R) Alex Zanich, Lois Miles and Anxo Cereijo Roibas from Engine Transformation with UNISON ULR Norman Hunter working on the NRS Get Help to Retrain project.

The National Retraining Scheme is the Government’s new programme, developed alongside the TUC and CBI through the National Retraining Partnership, to prepare adults for future changes to the economy, including those brought about by automation.  It will help adults to retrain and secure better jobs whilst supporting employers to get the skilled workers they need.

Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (LCRCA) Union Learning Rep Norman Hunter explained:

Merseylearn has always worked closely with unionlearn and we continue to do so. When we were approach by our old TUC friend Mark Rowe back in May to provide some staff for interviews, our branch saw the potential to help shape the new scheme. We chatted to management and worked together to get eight staff including some Union reps to attend the interviews.

The one-off set of interviews expanded, and we are now on our fourth visit by the interview team with 27 LCRCA staff including several Union Reps directly taking part. We also promoted the National Retraining Scheme Website, so that all staff could have a look and leave feedback.”

Union Learning Reps have always played a key role in supporting workers to access the advice and training opportunities. The new service will respond to the changing nature of jobs and the types of tasks people do at work with the need for a multi-skilled workforce to take on new and emerging jobs, as business needs and practices change.

Unionlearn Project Officer Mark Rowe added:

Union learning representatives and project workers are playing a part in supporting the NRS program.  Unionlearn appreciate their hard work.  This role is central in helping workers access the new and exciting learning opportunities through the NRS and demonstrates the trade unions unique role supporting investment in the potential of all workers and delivering the skills we need for the future.”

Norman concluded:

All our staff and reps involved have said they enjoyed the experience, many, but not all, see the potential changes to work and digitalisation as an opportunity and not just another threat. The fourth industrial revolution is not something that is way off in the future, it is here now and it will transform many working lives.”

To find out more about the National Retraining Scheme go this webinar on the TUC website.