On 5 December 2016 our co-founder and Director, Andrew Scott-Taggart, gave formal witness evidence in person on behalf of The Found Generation to the House of Commons Work and Pensions Select Committee, chaired by Frank Field MP. This was for their inquiry on Employment opportunities for young people.
During the hearing Andrew spoke alongside Peter Little OBE, and Carole Easton, Chief Executive of the Young Women’s Trust, and answered a number of challenging questions from the MPs present. Their evidence was the second part of the hearing – the first part of the hearing involved the Committee hearing witness evidence from the MyGo youth employment centre in Suffolk and two of their service users (this is an initiative which we highlighted in our Manifesto in 2015 and recommended that the Government expand to other areas of the country).
Andrew was invited to provide witness evidence after submitting written evidence to the Committee in September 2016. The invitation was made on the basis that The Found Generation’s written evidence included a number of useful, practical suggestions which the Committee wished to consider further, and that we were a particularly appropriate organisation to give further evidence by virtue of being a youth-led organisation.
To be invited to give evidence to a Parliamentary Select Committee was a great honour for us and is a testament to our hard work over the last few years. It is also significant that, unlike many of the organisations which normally give evidence to Select Committees, we were invited to do so despite not having any staff – we rely entirely on volunteers – and despite having very limited funding and limited experience of submitting evidence to these sort of inquiries. This is a welcome indication that we can, and do, punch above our weight in the debate on youth unemployment and promoting opportunities for young people.