Schools and employers must do more to help people to gain skills to lift them out of poverty into employment, a government report said today.
The review of skills for the Treasury by Lord Leitch warned that a generation could be “permanently cut off” from the labour market because of increasing levels of inequality, deprivation and child poverty as a result of low skills.
Leitch called for a “radical step change” in the UK’s commitment to raising skill levels including increasing the number of adults achieving basic literacy and numeracy.
Kate Green, chief executive of the Child Poverty Action Group, welcomed the review, but said chancellor Gordon Brown needed to find an additional £4 billion to halve child poverty by 2010.
She also called for barriers to work including child care requirements, confidence in the workplace and training costs to be addressed.