‘The Government must act now to redesign the European Social Fund and avoid a potentially disastrous interruption in funding.’
This is a recommendation by the Work and Pensions Select Committee in their April 2018 report (pdf) on the European Social Fund.
The report recommends:
- Establishing a new arm’s length body, or creating an arrangement with an existing one, to hold the fund’s budget, dovetailing existing funding streams so programmes can meet effectively all of their participants’ needs
- Ensuring flexibility of local funding mechanisms for both longer-term (with funding cycles of at least seven years, as in the current fund) and short-term programmes; and
- Reducing overall bureaucracy for providers enabling them to focus on what really matters: value for money, building understanding of “what works” in employment support, and fostering new entrants.
We’ve also made the case for an effective replacement of EU funding that supports equality and human rights. Our report makes twenty recommendations for post-Brexit funding.