Maintaining support to unemployed and young people

Durham County Council logo with rainbow

Durham County Council is continuing to provide employment and skills training during the Coronavirus pandemic.

The council is offering support to unemployed residents and young people remotely, as it adapts services to comply with government guidance aimed at reducing the spread of COVID-19.

The council’s DurhamWorks, Adult Learning and Skills Service and Employability Durham teams have ceased all face to face services until further notice but are continuing to work remotely and providing support via phone, text, email, Facebook and online chats.

  • County residents aged 16 to 24 who are unemployed can get information, support and advice on job and apprenticeship opportunities, and courses and training by chatting online to a member of the Durham Works team and/or visiting their Facebook page or website.
  • People aged 25 and over who are unemployed and living in the county can still seek help and support to get back into work or start their own business through Employability Durham. To speak to the team, send an email or visit the web page or Facebook page.
  • County residents aged 16 and over who are interested in gaining skills and qualifications and/or personal development can access a range of online, distance learning courses offered by the Adult Learning and Skills Service. To find out more phone 03000 266115, email or visit the web page.

Meanwhile the council is encouraging people who may be victims of domestic abuse to seek support.

Harbour’s refuges are still open for victims and providing support in the following forms:

  • Refuge accommodation and support;
  • Video support;
  • WhatsApp messaging;
  • Telephone calls;
  • Email support.

Harbour can be contacted by calling 03000 20 25 25 emailing or visiting the website.

People in an abusive situation can also contact police without speaking. To do so they should:

  • Ring 999;
  • Listen to the questions from the operator and respond by coughing or tapping the handset if they can;
  • If prompted they should dial 55 – letting the operator know they are in an emergency situation and to put the call through to police.

Meanwhile, the council’s street lighting team is running a limited service but continuing to respond to emergency call outs and repairing single lights where it is possible and safe to do so.

Cllr Olwyn Gunn, the council’s Cabinet member for children and young people’s services, said: “We are doing everything we can to ensure the essential services our residents rely on are effected as little as possible in these very difficult times.

“Teams like DurhamWorks, the Adult Learning and Skills Service and Employability Durham are rightly heeding government guidance and not offering their usual face to face service but the vital support they provide can still be accessed remotely and we would encourage anyone needing their help to get in touch.”

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