A group of Oldham’s main institutions including the council have pledged to work together to build local wealth in the borough.
The Council, Hospital, College, Housing providers, Police and the Leisure Trust will ensure their collective spend, assets and wealth are used to benefit local people
This means buying the good and services they need from local businesses, employing local people, working in partnership with the voluntary sector and social enterprises and becoming Living Wage employers.
Oldham already has a great starting point.
The Council spends 55% of all goods and services in the Oldham economy thanks to a social value ethos introduced when it first became a co-operative council.
We plan to increase this to 60% in the next year and 63% the year after. That will equate to an extra £16 million extra going back into Oldham economy.
66% of all Council spend also goes to small and medium sized enterprises and we also want to ensure the community, voluntary and social enterprise sector benefit. This work is therefore supported by a thriving communities programme that backs the development of social action and infrastructure.
72% of Oldham’s suppliers have created employment opportunities in the borough and we aim to increase the social value element further.
Other partners are also doing their bit and have agreed to have a stronger emphasis on employing local people including from our poorest and most underrepresented areas.
For example, Oldham Hospital (Northern Care Alliance) has pledged to increase the number of Oldham residents they employ by 200 people (5%). They also want to increase the average wage earnings and get more Oldham residents to break the £30,000 wage ceiling. They are working closely with Oldham College to identify how local young people can gain the skills to help them develop careers at the Hospital.
Oldham Leisure Trust employs 79% of Oldham residents and has a good success rate in employing people from across all parts of the borough.
Greater Manchester Police has also made great strides in employing new recruits from across Oldham’s communities.
Together we want to ‘grow our own’ public service workforce and create career pipelines from the Colleges through to employers.
There are other ways that partners can contribute too.
Oldham Council are a Living Wage employer and we can encourage our suppliers to pay the Living Wage and be good employer too.
We are also doing more as a collective to reduce our carbon footprint and become single use plastic free.
Only by working as one Team Oldham will we begin to build a fairer economic system.
Cllr Sean Fielding, Leader of Oldham Council