At Community’s biennial delegate conference in 2019, members of the union came together to decide our priorities for the year ahead. Skills was an issue that really resonated with the delegates, and they took the decision that it should be a priority campaign for the union.

By working with members across our sectors, the campaign will focus activity with employers, government, local councils, as well as stakeholders in the skills space.


Conference notes that skilled employment is vital to our economy, often providing well paid and decent work. However, government expenditure on education and training continues to fall. Conference also notes that British employers are spending 50% less on training per employee than the EU average.
Conference believes that with the changing world of work, some jobs are being automated and that the people working in those jobs will need to reskill to find new work. Conference further believes that trade unions like Community have a responsibility to be at the forefront of campaigning for and securing better skills provision.

Conference calls on Community to:

• Lobby the government for better skills provision, including but not limited to; free college courses for people who have left employment, increasing the amount of ringfenced money for training that can be accessed by local councils and the creation of new lifelong learning opportunities.

• Call on employers to recognise the importance of and provide; transferable skills, reskilling opportunities and well-paid apprenticeships.

• Work with local councils to increase the skills provision in their area.

• Continue working to understand the impact of technological change on workers through the Commission on Workers and Technology.

• Push for more, and better paid apprenticeships.

• Lobby the Ministry of Justice to ensure adequate training and skills are being offered to prisoners to reduce reoffending and increase the likelihood of prisoners finding work after prison.

• Ensure all our members have access to skills-based learning and the opportunity to retrain.

• Run a skills audit, identifying where skills gaps lie and how we can prepare those workers to take the steps to upskill and/or retrain.

Want to get involved in shaping our campaign? Get in touch:

Skills News

Community - March 16th, 2020 | Reading Time: 2 minutes
Reps from across Community’s sectors, including steel, justice and logistics, attended the union’s latest five-day reps training course last week. Attendees learnt how to support [...]
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Community - February 26th, 2020 | Reading Time: 2 minutes
Members have participated in the first five-day Community reps training course from the union’s new education programme. The course took place at the GFTU’s Quorn [...]
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Roy Rickhuss - February 10th, 2020 | Reading Time: 3 minutes
“There are huge responsibilities for all of us to get this right…” Roy Rickhuss wrote for Unions 21 about the skills challenge facing the country. [...]
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Community - January 24th, 2020 | Reading Time: 2 minutes
“We have listened to our members…” The Community regional office in Glasgow has recently hosted the first regional seminar for members in Scotland. This regional [...]
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Community - December 18th, 2019 | Reading Time: 2 minutes
The first Union Learning Reps training course run from Community’s Sheffield office was recently delivered by The Manchester College. Eight Union Learning Reps (ULRs) attended [...]
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Community - October 24th, 2019 | Reading Time: 2 minutes
“Working together, we can support more people to learn and help shift the mindsets of the population on skills and training…” Today Community’s General Secretary [...]
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Community - October 19th, 2019 | Reading Time: 2 minutes
“Our new education programme will help break down barriers to participation…” As part of Community’s new education programme, the union held regional training seminars for [...]
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Caroline Taylor - October 4th, 2019 | Reading Time: 2 minutes
Caroline Taylor, Community’s National Secretary for the Finance and Professional Sector, looks at how the union is finding new ways to engage with members and [...]
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Community - September 23rd, 2019 | Reading Time: 2 minutes
“Unlocking the Union Learning Reps’ potential…” Community recently launched its first ‘One-Day Community Learning Course’ for their Union Learning Reps (ULRs). The training course was [...]
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Community - September 18th, 2019 | Reading Time: 2 minutes
“We have the potential to shift skills gaps across the country by engaging workers…” Commenting on the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee report, [...]
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