A senior Government minister visited Stoke on Trent College’s Burslem campus to raise awareness of pensions and discuss changes to the automatic enrolment system.
Laura Trott, the then Minister for Pensions, met with a group of Apprentices, T Level and BTEC students from Business, Engineering and Early Years courses to discuss financial inclusion and what the proposed changes might mean for young people in the future.
It followed the Automatic Enrolment Private Members’ Bill (PMB) – designed to help millions of people, including low earners and younger workers save more into their pension – completing its passage through Parliament and receiving Royal Assent.
The Bill, introduced in the House of Commons by Stoke-on-Trent North MP Jonathan Gullis, creates powers to scrap the lower earnings limit and reduce the age for Automatic Enrolment.
Laura Trott, who since the visit has been appointed Chief Secretary to the Treasury in the latest Government reshuffle, said: “It was fantastic to be able to visit Stoke on Trent College’s Burslem Campus alongside Jonathan Gullis MP.
“Jonathan spearheaded the campaign to take the Automatic Enrolment PMB through the House of Commons earlier this year. As a result the fantastic apprentices and young workers I met will have the best opportunity to save for the retirement outcomes they want.”
During the visit, the Minister had the opportunity to view some of the industry standard facilities available at the campus, including specialist equipment and facilities in two of the four Skills Hubs for construction and engineering.
These facilities form a key part of the new Skills Ready Future Ready strategy – and the college’s work in partnership with the Department for Work and Pensions to offer specialist training programmes designed to help unemployed adults and people facing barriers to work.
Stoke on Trent College Principal and CEO Lisa Capper said: “We are extremely proud to work in partnership with the DWP on supporting young people and adults in to work.
“Raising the awareness and understanding of the importance of personal finance and pensions with our younger learners is a vital part of the work we do to ensure that they develop effective work and life skills during their time with us.”