Mayor John Leggett has welcomed an announcement by Employment Minister, Willie Jackson, that the Government is establishing 15 independent Regional Skills Leadership Groups (RSLG), including one in Marlborough.
“Marlborough has its own particular workforce needs and this is recognition by the Government that a Marlborough approach is needed to address our own employment challenges,” Mayor Leggett said.
“The Marlborough Regional Skills Leadership Group will identify and support better ways of meeting future skills and workforce needs in our region.”
“They will be part of a nationwide labour market planning approach to get New Zealand’s workforce, education and immigration systems working together to better meet the differing skills needs across the country.”
“We know from the work already done by The Economic Action Marlborough (TEAM) group that the sectors most affected by the COVID-19 crisis are hospitality, tourism and accommodation, retail and construction. Small to medium-sized enterprises are more impacted, and young people are more heavily affected by job losses than other age groups,” Mayor Leggett said.
The RSLG is to be chaired by communications and business consultant Brendon Burns. Its membership is made up of Marlborough industry leaders, economic development agencies, iwi, worker and government representatives who will contribute their local knowledge and expertise.
Brendon Burns says he’s impressed with the calibre of the new group’s membership with skills, knowledge and networks spanning iwi, the wider Marlborough community, Council and the business sector.
“We have a number of strands to weave into our work. While we will have support from the Government via MBIE, we need this strong cross-sectional group to put forward solutions for Marlborough on jobs, training, skills and labour.”
He says the Marlborough RSLG complements TEAM group’s economic recovery work that is already underway.
“Its approach was collaborative and put Marlborough first as does the Smart+Connected Labour and Skills group. I’d envisage our new group will adopt a similar kaupapa.”