What does the Green Party manifesto mean for careers?

Like Pokemon, I’ve got to catch em all (my cultural references are as on point as the King’s). So before the election I’m going to quickly report on the Green Party’s manifesto.

The manifesto is called Real Hope, Real Change which is essentially the party trolling the other political parties in a fairly amusing way. The manifesto has received a lot of fairly favourable coverage, see the BBC’s explainer or The Guardian’s summary. Basically it is a fairly standard progressive manifesto with a particular interest in the environment. The section on the economy is particularly interesting as it imagines a ‘Green New Deal‘ type set of economic policies based around substantial purposeful investment into both public services and initiatives designed to address climate change. This will be underpinned by substantial investment in research and skills development.

There is lots to like for me in this manifesto, but of course the party are very unlikely to form the next government. Britain Elects currently has them on 6% of the vote and likely to get 4 MPs.

But what do they have to say about careers related topics.

Careers

Careers are discussed in terms of the reform to the social care system with a promise to sort out the weak progression structures in that sector through forms of social partnership. A similar proposal is also made in relation to those working in farming.

There is also a recognition that the structure for people’s careers are getting more complex and that there is a need to respond to this through changes in the education system.

But, no specific mention of careers education or guidance.

Education

Education is viewed as a public good and something that should be available to all and free at the point of need.

In schools this means that they will increase funding whilst broadening the curriculum, improving parity of esteem with vocational and arts-based subjects and introducing a new Natural History GCSE. They will also move schools back into local authority control, tax private schools more and improve the infrastructure for health and mental health support.

In further education they will also increase the funding and reintroduce the Education Maintenance Allowance to financially support young people. In higher education the policy is focused on cancelling student debt rather than addressing the bigger funding issues in the sector.

Employment

The Green Party will substantially strengthen workers rights and address the issues faced by precarious workers. They will also target the gender pay gap and work to reduce the length of the working week. They will also reform and increase benefits and explore the possibility of a Universal Basic Income.

But, there is no thinking about the role of the public employment service and what the infrastructure for employment and careers support should be for adults.

Overall

This is a good manifesto on all of the big issues that the Labour Party manifesto (and others) dodge. There is a sense that Britain needs a transformation and a realistic plan to bring this about. But, it is a little light on details on a lot of the issues that I and readers of this blog probably care about most.

The Green Party seem to have had a reasonable hearing from the media in this election and have stepped up their game in terms of policy detail. Hopefully after the election they will want to explore the issue of career development more detail. My DMs remain open!

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