Mr Skerrit gave this warning, notwithstanding a recent approval by cabinet, for the continuation of the program. The NEP was introduced in December 2013, with the aim of providing employment opportunities for the unemployed and underemployed.
Meanwhile, he says employers who are satisfied with the program, have partnered with Government in a 50/50 payment arrangement.
At the initial launch of the program, then Employment Minister Dr. Colin McIntyre, stated that Government would cover the employment cost of the interns for a one-year period. Since its inception, 1,499 persons have benefitted from the program.
Employment Minister Ian Douglas recently said 1,113 interns are now engaged in the program. He said more than 50 persons have been able to secure permanent employment, and another 34 have been placed on the 50-50 arrangement, where the employers pay half of the interns’ salary, and the government meets the other half. He also pointed out that 120 have transitioned out of the NEP.