Jobs market 'should be snap election priority'
Recruitment leaders in the UK are calling for the main political parties to make strengthening the country's jobs market a top priority in the run-up to the snap general election called for by the Prime Minister yesterday (Tuesday April 18th).
Theresa May had originally said she would not be calling a general election until 2020, but under the Fixed-Term Parliaments Act, she is able to with a majority vote from MPs.
In her statement outside 10 Downing Street, Mrs May explained that she was calling for a snap election on Thursday June 8th because "division in Westminster" would make it more challenging for Brexit to be a success, leaving the nation struggling with "uncertainty and instability".
An unexpected general election therefore provides the country's political parties with a chance to put forward their manifestos not just regarding Brexit, but for other issues as well, and many believe building a stronger jobs market with more opportunities for limited company contractors, freelancers and other workers should be at the heart of these.
Samantha Hurley, Operations Director at the Association of Professional Staffing Companies, said: "A snap election offers the opportunity to get skills, jobs and recruitment up the agenda, not only from an internal perspective, but also with regards to Brexit negotiations."
The skills shortage was an issue during campaigning for the last general election just two years ago, so all eyes will be on the party leaders over the coming seven weeks to see how they address this issue in the run-up to the vote on June 8th.
Kate Shoesmith, Head of Policy at the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, commented: "I hope that all the parties go into this short, intense campaign with the value of a strong labour market to the UK economy at the forefront of their minds."
She added that with the country's recruitment industry worth £35.1 billion to the economy, this needs to be "recognised and supported" by whichever party is tasked with forming a new government this summer.